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Thursday, December 8, 2011



BRADFORD, Pa. -- Students from the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford presented research on a variety of different topics from campus sustainability to a study of funeral directors at the 12th annual Penn-York Undergraduate Research Conference held at the Venango Campus of Clarion University last month.

Krista Perkins, a sociology and elementary education major from Bradford, presented “Two-tiered Care: Inequality in Nursing Homes.” Her presentation explored unequal treatment of residents in nursing homes. Perkins conducted her research by observing participants and interviewing staff at three nursing homes.

Mary Young, a psychology major from Oil City, presented “Female Genital Mutilation: A Global Goal for Abolishment.” Her presentation dealt with the harmful effects that female genital mutilation has on women and possible solutions to the problem.

Kaitlin Zapel, a human relations major from Bradford, presented “Economic Voting in New Democracies: How Globalization Conditions Electoral Accountability,” which explored the effect of the global markets on economic accountability.

Sarah Randolph, a sociology major from Bradford, presented “Good or Bad?: A Qualitative Look at Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace,” which focused on what people’s opinions, attitudes, and perceptions are on drug and alcohol use and testing in the workplace.

Kathryn Cherry, a sociology major from Johnsonburg, presented “Gender Disparities in the Workplace.” Her presentation focused on gender bias in the U.S. job market. Cherry interviewed 10 men and 10 women who have entered a field previously dominated by the opposite sex in order to see what problems they encountered and how they coped and overcame them.

Danielle Kenney, a sociology major from Youngsville, presented “Sexual Harassment in Female Service Occupations,” which focused on how waitresses and female bartenders handle sexual harassment in their jobs.

Brittney Wagner, a sociology major from Tionesta, presented “Behind Closed Doors: Funeral Directors,” which addressed how funeral directors dealt with the negative aspects of their profession. Wagner talked to five local funeral directors and the Dean of Pittsburgh’s Institute of Mortuary Science, and collected surveys from college students.

Jada Swart, a social science major from Corry, presented “The Blue Collar Blues: Life as a Construction Worker,” in which she researched the positive and negative aspects of being a construction worker by conducting interviews and observing workers at two construction sites.

Amanda Perkins, an elementary education and sociology major from Bradford, presented “Are You Dealing with Job Loss?” in which she addressed how job loss in America has become a widespread problem with many negative effects on the jobless.

Morgan Kinville, a sociology major Fulton, N.Y., presented “The Good and the Bad of Group Home Life” In her presentation, she talked about the positive and negative aspects of the policies put in place for group homes.

Corey Meyer, a social science major from Bradford, presented “Has the Stigma of Interracial Relationships Lessened Since Segregation Was Outlawed?” In her presentation, Meyer spoke about interracial relationships in the United States and how people have viewed them over time.

Sara Gligora, a sociology major Milton, presented “When Blended Families Divorce,” which addressed blended families and divorce and investigated how the family’s dissolution affects family roles.

Joe Hannon, a biology major, presented “Variation in Ovule Production of Erythronium americanum and its Relationship to Geographic Elevation.” Hannon’s research examined the number of ovules produced by trout lilies in relation to how much pollen they received.

Meagan Little, a sociology major from Bradford, presented “Performing Sports Magic,” which focused on the different rituals and superstitions that occur among individual athletes, teams, and sport fans in order for them to have an effective outcome in their performances.

Matthew Abplanalp, a chemistry major from Warren, and Charles Holjencin, a chemistry major from Emporium, presented a poster titled “A Phytoponics Approach to Campus Sustainability.” The project dealt with the degradation of dyes and coffee wastewater, and their application as fertilizer for willows.

James Cable, a biology major from Russell, also presented a poster titled “The Effects of Acetylcholine on Heart Function in an Invertebrate Bivalve Mollusc.” In Cable’s presentation, he worked with clams to find out the effect of the chemical acetylcholine on their hearts at various temperatures.

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