Penn State Hazleton Undergraduate Research Symposium Winners Announced

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HAZLETON, Pa. — Penn State Hazleton’s Undergraduate Research Committee has announced the winners of the campus’ annual undergraduate research symposium.

Held virtually from April 5-8, the symposium featured student research or academic work done with Penn State Hazleton faculty members. Work was submitted in two categories: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Nargess Tahmasbi, assistant professor of information science and technology and co-chair of the undergraduate research committee, said the committee was pleased with the turnout and quality of projects at this year’s symposium.

“I am grateful that we have once again succeeded in providing students with the opportunity to showcase the research projects they have worked on so hard under the supervision of their mentor professors,” she said. “We appreciate all of the volunteer support and contributions received from faculty, judges, campus management, and the Lofstrom Library.”

Winners will now have the opportunity to attend the Regional Undergraduate Research Symposium at Penn State Schuylkill on April 23.

The winners and their submissions were:

Arts, humanities and social sciences

First place: Savannah Cothron, “Devaluation of Future Rewards as an Underlying Mechanism of Media Multitasking in the Classroom” (Research supervisor: Yusuke Hayashi, Associate Professor of Psychology)

Second place: Ashanty Vargas, “The Pink Tax: The Cost of Being a Woman” (Research Advisor: Eileen Morgan, Assistant Professor of English Education)

Third place: Zakary Johnson, “When the Grim Reaper Calls, Tell Him I’m Not Home: Doomed to Die, But Eventually Exonerated” (Research Advisor: Daniel Gutierrez, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice)

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)

First place: Mark Brady, Clayton Kimsal, and Nathan Pauselli, “Foxdale On-Site Energy Generation Using Solar Carports” (Research Advisor: Joseph Ranalli, Associate Professor of Engineering)

Second place: Kevin Lowen and Brett Wilson, “Halogen Bonding in Photochromic Napthoquinone Based Diarylethenes” (Research Director: Dan Patel, Assistant Professor of Chemistry)

Third place: Rochelle Rodriguez, “Factors Affecting Bird-Window Collisions on the Penn State Hazleton Campus” (Research Advisor: Christopher Goguen, Associate Professor of Biology)

Undergraduate Research Scholarship: Excellence in Information Literacy

Students could also choose to compete for the University Libraries Undergraduate Research Award: Excellence in Information Literacy. The winners in this category were:

First place: Savannah Cothron, “Devaluation of Future Rewards as an Underlying Mechanism of Media Multitasking in the Classroom” (Research Director: Yusuke Hayashi, Associate Professor of Psychology)

Second place: Mark Brady, Clayton Kimsal, and Nathan Pauselli, “Foxdale On-Site Energy Generation Using Solar Carports” (Research Advisor: Joseph Ranalli, Associate Professor of Engineering

Third place: Zakary Johnson, “When the Grim Reaper Calls, Tell Him I’m Not Home: Doomed to Die, But Eventually Exonerated” (Research Advisor: Dan Gutierrez, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice)

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