The spring Learning Fair, held April 26 at Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus, was a showcase of creativity and intelligence that featured prize-winning projects on electromagnetics and the strengths of materials.
This semester, the biannual competition included poster entries and tabletop displays from a variety of the academic disciplines offered at the Fayette campus, though the majority of winners came from the Engineering program.
Charles Patrick, chancellor and chief academic officer at Penn State Fayette, said the Learning Fair shows that undergraduate research is thriving on campus. “This event highlights many of our best students demonstrating their undergraduate research and class projects.”
A three-person panel evaluated the Learning Fair entries. Judges included: Devan White, financial adviser at BPU Investments and founding member of Fayette Young Professionals Network; Cynthia Bellina, coordinator and training supervisor for the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services; and Gary Monaghan, lawyer and chairman of the Advisory Board of Penn State Fayette.
After judging of the 39 entries was completed, the top four winners were:
First place: “Stress and Strain” (strengths of materials), Cody Lawrence and Robert Gunther, course: EMCH 213/Strengths of Materials, Instructor Nate Bohna
Second Place: “Application of Engineering Materials” (strengths of materials), Harry Barrett and Adomas Povilianskas, course: EMCH 213/Strengths of Materials, Instructor Nate Bohna
Third Place: “Thermal Expansion” (strengths of materials), Zoey Budd, course: EMCH 213/Strengths of Materials, Instructor Nate Bohna
Fourth Place: “Pushing Limits of Efficiency” (electromagnetism), Harry Barrett and Adomas Povilianskas, course: PHYS 212/Electromagnetism, Instructor Jim Crawford
Three of the four winning entries came from one class taught by Instructor Nate Bohna. He believes the Learning Fair provides a unique opportunity to learn important skills that are not often taught in the classroom. “These students were able to develop valuable written and oral communication skills through designing and presenting posters, as well as explaining their hands-on engineering demonstrations to others,” said Bohna.
Patrick, who presented the winners with certificates and Apple giftcards, said the campus is especially honored for them, due to the highly competitive nature of the event. “The achievements represented at the Learning Fair are impressive,” he said, “and the campus is proud of these young women and men for their academic and creative efforts.”