More than 170 Wilson College students will present the results of their undergraduate and graduate research covering a variety of disciplines and topics at Wilson’s 10th annual Student Research Day on Friday, May 3. The public is invited to join Wilson students, faculty, staff and administrators at all events.

Approximately 23 students will give oral presentations based on their work, which was produced in conjunction with faculty advisers, beginning at 8:45 a.m. Sessions will run concurrently in the Brooks Science Center auditorium and John Stewart Memorial Library’s Lenfest Learning Commons.

In addition to the oral presentations, other students will share their work graphically in a poster session to be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the first floor of the original library building. Along with the poster session, students in the Women in Antiquity course will display a pop-up museum exhibition at the same location.

At 11 a.m., students in Classical Mythology will perform scenes from ancient Greek theater outside on the library patio, weather permitting, and dance students in the Performance Projects course will perform Dancing in a World of Change, at 11:40 a.m. on the first floor of the original library building.

All presentations will conclude by 4:30 p.m.

“Student Research Day continues to be my favorite day of the academic year because the research presented, undergraduate and graduate, is the culmination of the academic experience at Wilson College,” said Elissa Heil, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty. “This year’s event is extra special because we are also celebrating our institution’s Sesquicentennial—the 150th anniversary of the founding of Wilson College.”  

Presentations will focus on the humanities, sciences and social sciences, including the prestigious Disert Scholar session from 3:45 to 4:15 p.m. in the Brooks auditorium. The Disert award, given to the student with the best honors thesis proposal, went this year to Elen Harutyunyan of Yerevan, Armenia. She will present the results of research that examines the impact of sociocultural trauma on the Argentine-Armenian community. Harutyunyan’s research project, In the Shadow of 1915: Post-Genocide Identity Preservation among Argentine-Armenians, investigates the process of identity formation, development and preservation following genocide. Her project is supported by a variety of rich qualitative data, including interviews and ethnographic research.

Other presentations will include examinations of:  how minority student-athletes experiences at large, primarily white universities or colleges compare to those experienced at small institutions; political engagement among college students at Wilson and beyond; the impact of Alaskan commercial fishing on Chinook salmon; the effects of federally mandated restaurant menu labeling on people with eating disorders; the impacts of pre-operative physical therapy on people undergoing knee replacement; and the effects of urban tributaries on larger bodies of water (specifically how tributaries in Hagerstown, Md., affect the Antietam Creek).

Group presentations will include several case students analyzing real-world cases of fraud committed by financial firms and the techniques those firms used to defraud investors.

Wilson’s Student Research Day will conclude with the annual Academic Awards presentation at 6 p.m. in the Brooks Science Center auditorium.

Student Research Day at Wilson was founded in 2010 as a way to recognize and celebrate the research, scholarship and creative activities of students and their faculty mentors. For more information, visit


Published: April 23, 2019