Honors Scholars students at Penn State DuBois present research project progress

Penn State DuBois Honors Scholars seniors Dylan Treaster, Larissa James-LaBranch, Taylor Charles and Lukas Salvo

Penn State DuBois Honors Scholars seniors Dylan Treaster, Larissa James-LaBranch, Taylor Charles and Lukas Salvo.

Credit: Penn State

DuBOIS, Pa. – Four seniors at Penn State DuBois who are members of the Honors Scholars program recently presented information about their in-process research projects that they are completing. These students are the first senior class of Honors Scholars at Penn State DuBois. The students are Taylor Charles, Larissa James-LaBranche, Lukas Salvo, and Dylan Treaster.

Charles, a business major focusing on management and marketing, has been conducting research dealing with moving from traditional structured classrooms in higher education. Working off the change in classroom settings during the COVID-19 pandemic, Charles studied the development of augmented and virtual reality, which are available at the Idea Lab through the North Central PA LaunchBox powered by Penn State DuBois.

James-LaBranche, a dual major student in business and psychology, is conducting research into group cohesion and discipline. For her study, students in groups are put under different conditions throughout the study to see how they are affected by each condition. Using the variables of a team bonding activity and different deadline times, data has been collected throughout the fall semester.

Salvo, majoring in human development and family studies, developed his research project to take principles detailed in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and project that onto something that children would be able to use to easily and comfortably present how they feel. Using a Rubik’s cube, children have a concreate way that they can show how they are feeling and what their needs are by matching the colors on the cube to the levels on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. This allows them to explain their emotions in a healthy way and without being overwhelmed.

Treaster, an applied materials engineering major, is conducting research into an area where very few solutions are currently available, repair applications for aluminum 7075. This specific aluminum is used in many aerospace applications but doesn’t have a repair process available when they need to be made. His research is looking into the viability of laser directed energy deposition to create a readily available repair process for aluminum 7075.

During the spring semester,  each of these students and their research projects will be highlighted individually. Details will be shared on their research, why they picked their topics, what they gained from this research and more.