Student Showcase of Excellence at PSU

May 2nd, 2011 by Adam

The loons of New Hampshire may someday owe a debt of gratitude to Ian Lasell. Using data gathered over the course of 35 years from the Loon Preservation Committee, the senior mathematics major from Laconia, N.H., determined that there is no immediate threat of extinction to the bird, though some challenges do exist to the strength of their numbers.

Lasell’s poster demonstration was among the 15 student projects on display at Plymouth State University’s first Student Showcase of Excellence. The event, held Saturday (April 30) at the campus’s welcome center, was a celebration of scholarship, collaboration and research.

“Plymouth State University is committed to excellent research, creative endeavors and community engagement,” said Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Julie Bernier.

“Your work represents the best of PSU.”

Topics such as art, communications, philosophy, and environmental science and policy celebrated the talents and initiative of students in researching and organizing projects and acknowledging the support and guidance provided by faculty.

In addition to poster displays and video presentations, students from the Department of Health and Human Performance demonstrated “teaching fitness through games,” using “fun techniques” used in elementary physical education programs. And Music, Theater and Dance students performed an original choreographed work to close the showcase.

Plymouth State University President Dr. Sara Jayne Steen presented certificates to all participants.
Kendra Bumpus, a junior political science major from North Attleboro, Mass., was excited to talk about her experiences participating in the Model United Nations, a program coordinated by Harvard University. Bumpus most recently traveled to Singapore, China, “representing” Agricultural Missions, Inc., a non-governmental organization (NGO). The previous year, she was a “member” of the delegation of the United Arab Emirates as they discussed issues related to tropical diseases and medial tourism.

“The world is globalizing,” Bumpus says, “and it is no longer possible to be proficient in a subject without the context and awareness of what is happening” in other countries. Sharpening her skills in collaboration, critical thinking and understanding multiple perspectives have been valuable in other academic disciplines.

Also traveling to China recently were William Fredericks and Christopher Ignagni. Fredericks, a senior business major from New Milford, N.J., and Ignagni, a senior graphic design major from Kingston, Mass., visited Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong to study Chinese business and culture, along with other students from PSU as well as St. Anselm College. Their companion class emphasized China’s growth as a major economic power, and Ignagni says seeing the country did not disappoint.

“It is so massive with so many people,” he says. The experience “really opened my eyes” to the possibilities and challenges of working with Chinese businesses. They were also able to observe the cultural differences – in doing business and in society in general – between China and the United States. Status symbols, some obvious, some vague, are important to understand in order to successfully compete in the Chinese market.

Several social work students displayed photos and descriptions of the annual Plymouth Senior Center Dance, this year with a Mardi Gras theme. “Most people think of children” when they think of social work, said Desiree Michaud, a junior from Danverse, Mass. Though she works at the Pemi Youth Center, Michaud changed her specialty to gerontology (the study of the social, psychological and biological aspects of aging) as a result of her participation in this annual event.

“It is such a neglected field.” Brianna Campbell, a junior from Dunham, Mass., added that her participation in the event also helped to build her organizational skills.

Plymouth State University
Student Showcase of Excellence
Participants and Topics


Art -

    Nate Cote

Atmospheric Science -

Verifying Model Forecasts of Arctic Fronts in Advance of
Winter Storms in the Southern Plans

    William E. Leatham

Biological Science -

Revealing the Relationships Defined by Organisms’ Responses to the Environment

    Jacqulyn B. Huckins

Business Administration -
Chinese Expedition

    William Fredericks, Christopher Ignagni

Communication and Media Studies -

The Sound of Silence

    Korey O’Brien, Kaleb Hart

Criminal Justice -

Estimating Sexual Assault on a University Campus: Results from a Student Survey at Plymouth State University

    Jessica Lyons, Julianne England

Environmental Science and Policy -
A Waste Minimization Study on the PSU Campus

    Stephanie Aubert, Ben Bolaski, Rebel Bolton, William Colt, Joe Daltorio, Kelly Donovan, Jonathan Flanders, Nick Keough, Sarah Lavoie, Mary Lenehan, Niles Motyl-Szary, Chris Myers, Bobby O’Brien, Leeanne O’Connor, Graham Oakes, Sean Quigley and Courtney Webb

Health and Human Performance -
Teaching Fitness Through Games

    Adah Gillon,Courtney LeCours,Lori West and Elizabeth Whalley

History and Philosophy -

Finding Truth Through Paradoxes

    Ben DiZoglio

Languages and Linguistics -

Four Years of Modern Languages Study-Developing and Perfecting Skills

    Sarah J. Ward

Mathematics -

Population Viability Analysis of New Hampshire Loon Population

    Ian Lasell

Music, Theater, and Dance -

Original Choreography

    Brittany Hill,Mackenzie Perra

Psychology -
Effect of Barbie Play on Body Esteem in 8-12 Year Old Girls

    Jennifer Moore

Social Science -

Academics and the Model United Nations

    Kendra Bumpus

Social Work -
Bringing Social Work Students and Older Adults Together

      Nicole Petrin,Brianna Campbell,


    Desiree Michaud,Molly Blaine

For more information about this release, contact Tim Kershner, PSU Chief Public Relations Officer., (603) 535-2476 or

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