Research projects explained tonight

Lucy Li, Copy Editor

Being involved in research projects can add some highlights to a student’s resume, but some students may not realize that these opportunities might be right down the stairs of the Student Union in the Cambria Room tonight.

According to one of the three organizers, Geology professor Ryan Kerrigan, the event is to be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. He said that there would be students and faculty presenting research results in the form of poster presentations. 

Kerrigan said that one of the things that might intrigue students’ interst is an opportunity to participate in a research project.

“…Professors here on the campus are doing cutting-edge research that students are, and can be, involved in. I know myself and other professors are always looking for good students to work on these interesting research projects,” Kerrigan said.

One of the students presenting a research project is junior geology student Anthony Taylor, who is to be presenting some new data about the 1889 Johnstown flood with his adviser Chris Coughenour.

“We are doing the project on Hydrology to attempt to answer some intriguing questions about the Johnstown flood.

“We feel good about our results thus far, however, we still need more data for high flow measurements in order to really predict some of the points that we are trying to do. 

 “I learned how to use hydrological equipment and how to calculate the discharge of a stream from this project, and I am learning more each time we go out into the field to get another measurement.” Taylor said.

Taylor said that he is also learning about making posters as this is his first time he has made one on this scale.

“I would strongly encourage other students to do a research project as it is great practice for future directions, and also good practice for presenting as well.” Taylor said.

Chemistry Department Chair Lisa Bell-Loncella, who is also one of the event’s organizers agreed the event would be an opportunity to share results with other faculty and interested students, and also to discover opportunities on the Pitt-Johnstown campus.

“Since some of the projects involve student researchers, the event is an opportunity for students to see what kind of scholarships and creative activities are available with faculty. 

“Several of the professors use this event as an opportunity to encourage students to become involved in projects with them.

“Every year there are some very interesting presentations (that) come from all parts of campus: humanities, social sciences, nursing, education, engineering, natural sciences and business and enterprise,” she said.

According to a chart sent by the Communication Department Chair Patty Wharton-Michael, who is also an event organizer, presenters and topics range from humanities to sciences, including Ako Inuzuka from the Communication Department; Marsha Grimminger from the Chemistry Department and Paul Newman from the History Department.