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SRU students shine at research symposium

Hope Hoehler, Rocket Contributor

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On Thursday, April 12, the Symposium for Student Research, Scholarship and Creative Achievement took place from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the Ballroom of the Smith Student Center. The Symposium is a single-day event that is designed to showcase the work of graduate and undergraduate students.

All majors are eligible to present their work in the symposium. Presentations from business, communication and education majors, as well as many others, were presented at this year’s symposium. The Symposium is a great opportunity for peers to gain insight into certain topics that they may not be too familiar with and appreciate the hard work of these graduate and undergraduate students.

Junior psychology major Emily Breitenbach, who is also earning a minor in gerontology, presented her work in the
psychology department with a presentation titled “The association between weight, sex, perceived weight and attractiveness, and mood swings in young adults.”

“I picked body image; if you look through the research and different articles they only focus on anxiety, depression, and eating disorders,” Breitenbach said. “Where mood swings that can indicate bipolar, major depressive and several other ways that can impact your life.”

“My favorite part of all of this was working with Dr. Willford,” Breitenbach stated. “She was my rock through this
entire process. I was not into research before taking Stats. and now I’m in love it with it. She changed my entire attitude about it and I’m so grateful to be working with her!”

Showing a wide variety in the presentations at the symposium, Jessica Jablonski, who studied Environmental Studies and Sustainability with a certificate in Geographic Information Systems, presented her work in the geology department with the presentation “Geocaching and the Environment: Who, where, and how people interact with their environment through geocaching.”

“So what this can be used for is community engagement, local community planning, getting people outside to not only interact with the green environment which most people consider like, the woods or a field, but interacting with their local urban environment, such as you can walk down the street and be like, ‘Oh, here’s a geocache hiding in this little corner of a rock’ and I wanted to be able to visualize that and it worked out pretty well,” Jablonski said.

The education department had representation, as well. Junior middle-level mathematics education major Megan Moser, who is earning a minor in elementary school math, presented her work with augmented reality with the presentation “Augmented Reality: Changing the Typical Classroom.”

“I’m an education major so I’m looking at how to use it in the classroom,” Moser said. “Kids love technology; it’s very interactive and engaging so when the kids get to use this, they automatically become more motivated and therefore their increased interest creates an increase in grades.”

Augmented reality is still a relatively new concept that is being researched.

“It’s new,” Moser said. “I’ve been researching this for about two or three years now and it’s still very unexplored, so you learn more about it.”

Junior integrated marketing and communication major with a minor in business administration Tannor Williams did a presentation titled “Cybercrime.”

“I chose to do cybercrime as a whole topic instead of just breaking it down into different categories because I felt that there’s just so much involved in cybercrime that you just got to focus more on the whole aspect of it because not many people are knowledgeable on it,” Williams said.

“I think that there should be more classes offered to teach kids, maybe starting at especially the younger age to make them more knowledgeable on it and especially the older community as well, because they are the most vulnerable to be victims of it,” Williams said, considering the increase in technology. “Especially with hacking and email fraud, they get targeted the most out of anyone, so I just think it’s a really important topic that members of our society need to be informed about.”

Congratulations to all the graduates and undergraduates that presented their work at the Symposium.

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SRU students shine at research symposium