MEDIA, Pa. — Students at Penn State Brandywine had the opportunity to present their research to the campus community at Brandywine’s annual Exhibition of Undergraduate Research Enterprise and Creative Accomplishment (EURECA) on Tuesday, April 3.
This year's event featured 14 poster presentations from students in academic programs such as astronomy, biology, engineering, human development and family studies, psychology and more. At the end of the showcase, the top projects were awarded first through fourth place.
First place was awarded to biology major Madeline Malfara for her research “The Single Mitochondrion of Crithidia fasciculata is a Dynamic Network.” Malfara’s project was part of the STEM Research category, which includes projects in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering or mathematics that possibly hold significance to the general public. Her faculty mentor was Assistant Professor of Biology Megan Povelones.
“Presenting at EURECA gave me a chance to improve my communication skills,” Malfara said. “Doing research in the lab is great experience, but you need to be able to properly present your work. Forums like EURECA give you that opportunity. Being a strong communicator is a skill that goes far beyond just research.”
Pedram Pouladvand, who studies psychology, was awarded second place for his work “The Effects of Energy Drink Consumption on Stress, Academic Behaviors, Sleep, and Some Physiological and Psychological Outcomes.” Pouladvand’s research project was part of the Social Science and Humanities Research category, which includes social science and humanities projects that hold importance in the field of study and have a potential impact on the public. His faculty mentor was Assistant Teaching Professor of Psychology Joshua Marquit.
Third place was awarded to Julia Salkind, who majors in Chinese and anthropology, for her study “Designing an Inventory of Linguistic Prescriptivism.” Salkind’s project was also part of the Social Science and Humanities Research category, and her faculty mentor was Assistant Professor of Psychology Evan Bradley.
Fourth place was awarded to biology major Razahn Jerry for his project “GTPBP10 Expression and Role in Embryonic Development of Xenopus laevis.” Jerry’s project also was part of the STEM Research category, and his faculty mentor was Assistant Professor of Biology Mick Yoder.
Penn State Brandywine Director of Academic Affairs Cynthia Lightfoot was thrilled to see a wide variety of projects presented at the event and said that she was impressed with the undergraduates’ hard work.
“I continue to be impressed by the intellectual curiosity of our students, their sophistication in asking and answering significant questions, and the professionalism with which they communicate their new knowledge and understanding to the community,” Lightfoot said. “Our students are an inspiration to all of us, and EURECA reminds us of the many ways that research engagement and creative activities make the Brandywine experience so powerful and unique.”