Honors Theses

Honors Theses

As part of the Honors Curriculum, Patriot Scholars complete an honors thesis and present it at the Intersections Undergraduate Research Conference. Some work is presented at national research conferences and published in referred journals.

2017 Honors Theses

Hannah Arnold 
Integrating Arduino and Lego Mindstorms to Create a Player Piano 
Advisor: Benjamin Campbell

Brooke Birckbichler 
Sports–Related Concussions: The Symptoms, the Psychology, and the Treatments 
Advisor: Samantha Monda

Katherine Breeze
The Effect of Foam Rolling on Hamstring Flexibility in Division I Women's Lacrosse Players
Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Savanah Buhite 
English Language Learners and the Common Core: Overcoming Obscure Language in Literature 
Advisor: Ying Zhang

Jessica Chin 
Riding the Wave: An Analysis of Korean Drama Streaming 
Advisor: Ira Abdullah

Allison Couch 
The Wear on Tablet Tooling and How it Effects the Quality of a Product in a Manufacturing Environment 
Advisor: Rika Carlsen

Kyrstin Dittenhafer-Swartz 
Elective Hysterectomies: A Social Analysis 
Advisor: Nathan Taylor

Kenneth Fugagli 
Creating an Optimal way of Setting a Daily Fantasy Sports Lineup in an Attempt to Determine Whether it is a Game of Skill or Luck 
Advisor:  Christophe Groendyke

Megan Gold 
General Knowledge of Nutrition: A Demographic Study of NCAA Athletes 
Advisor: Jill Maher

David Grubic 
eSports: A New Era of Spectator Games 
Advisor: Alan Smith

Lindsay Hess 
Wide-Awake Hand Surgery: A Cost Analysis of Replacing Sedation with Local Anesthesia 
Advisor: Stephen Foreman

Deja Hopkins 
Creating Lekins LLC 
Advisor: Frank Flanegin

Joshua Kwasny 
Understanding Stochastic Calculus 
Advisor: Liang Hong

Ashley Messner 
Worldbuilding in Westeros: The Use of Functional Grammar in the Creation of Fantasy Worlds
Advisor: Mary Katherine Kiliany

Taylor Miller 
Attorneys' Take on Litigation Consulting 
Advisor: Michele Cole

Dale Miller 
minimus - Socially Beneficial Tiny Homes 
Advisor: Marcel Minutolo

Kelsey Paxton 
The Examination of Keyboards for Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus pyogenes 
Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Jacob Pearson 
Sponsorship Activation in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games 
Advisor: Artemisia Apostolopoulou

Emily Raab 
Health Care Predictive Modeling: Creating and Analyzing Models for Health Insurance Claims 
Advisor: Christophe Groendyke

Melissa Radovich 
Bridging the Life Insurance Gap: An Analysis of Online Life Insurance Calculators for the American Middle Market 
Advisor: Christophe Groendyke

Melissa Reinbold 
The Impact of B Corporation Certification on Consumer Trust, Purchase Intention and Willingness to Pay a Price Premium: An Evaluation of Certification Logos and Retail Displays 
Advisor: Jill Maher

Theodore Schuman 
Analysis of the Pennsylvania Pension Crisis and Hybridization Plans 
Advisor: David Hudak

Katie Shirley 
The Introduction of Actuarial Science to Secondary Students  
Advisor: David Hudak

Kendra Slis 
Engineering a Future: Developing Outreach Curriculum to Encourage High School Girls to Pursue a Career in Engineering 
Advisor: Rika Carlsen

Nicole Stone 
Antikythera Mechanism: Lego Replica 
Advisor: Andris Niedra

Molly Watterson 
Brand Strength: A Study of the Disney Vacation Club and Brand Extensions 
Advisor: James Shock

Lara Will 
The Increasing Disparity of Life Expectancies of People with Different Levels of Education 
Advisor: Chistophe Groendyke

Raeanna Wohlfarth 
The Effects of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program on Obesity, Health, and the Economy 
Advisor: Stephen Foreman

Jocelyn Young 
The Value of Parental Failure in Fairy Tales and the Dangers of Disney’s Parental Substitutes 
Advisor: Sylvia Pamboukian

2016 Honors Theses

Katrina Buchanan 
Writing Revolution: Telling the Deborah Sampson Story  
Advisor: Barbara Burgess-Lefebvre

Catherine Bush 
Analysis of New Rehabilitation Interventions for Elderly Stroke Victims with Upper Limb Hemiparesis 
Advisor: Holly Hampe

Lucas Carter
Level Up: A Feature Film
Advisor: Melissa Martin

Matthew Corkery 
Retirement Income in the Twenty-First Century: An Analysis of Public Pension Systems Around the World 
Advisor: David Hudak

Monica DeLuca 
The Financial Impact of Genetic Testing within Life Insurance 
Advisor: Christophe Groendyke

Tara Dillan 
Student Spending and Impulsivity
Advisor: Zhou Yang

Leah Fleischel 
Get It Right, Get It First, and Make It Social: How Social Media has Changed the Work Flow in Modern Newsrooms 
Advisor: Anthony Moretti

Diane Gorog 
Psychology of Injury Knowledge among Injury Rehabilitation Specialists 
Advisor:  Samantha Monda

Kayleigh Herrera 
Analysis of Nursing Students Regarding Elder Abuse 
Advisor: Carl Ross

Kyle Hinchberger 
Linear Oscillating Energy Generation 
Advisor: Tony Kerzmann

Madison Kozlowski 
Walt Disney World Organizational Structure and Customer Service 
Advisor: Barbara Burgess-Lefebvre

Deryn Martin 
A Case for Redesigning Ice Hockey Equipment for Women: Adressing Safety, Comfort, and Attitude Toward Shopping 
Advisor: Arif Sirinterlikci

Cheryl McMaster 
Destination Loyalty: The Roles of Destination Brand Image and Satisfaction 
Advisor: Denis Rudd

Brian Murone 
Health Insurance Literacy Among College Students 
Advisor: David Hudak

Jordan Neusch 
Perceptions and Knowledge: A Study of Former Pennsylvania High School Students’ Mental Health Education 
Advisor: Samantha Monda

Luke Phillips 
Capping the Game: A Look at the Effectiveness of a Salary Cap in Major League Baseball 
Advisor: David Hudak

Amber Pramann 
Rape Myths Revisited: Looking at Rape through the Lens of Religiosity 
Advisor: Lauren Rauscher

Jazmyne Sasse 
Treatment and Rehabilitation of Hamstring Injuries 
Advisor: Gavin Buxton

Haley Sawyer 
Hail to RMU: A Football Documentary 
Advisor: Cigdem Slankard

Andrew Scheidemantel 
An Investigation of Mandibular Reconstruction Techniques 
Advisor: Won Joo

Evyn Selden 
A Program Evaluation of the Nonprofit Organization: The Global Sisterhood 
Advisor: Mary Hansen

Isaac Swink 
Novel Manufacturing Process for Cranial Remolding Orthoses  
Advisor: Arif Sirinterlikci

Cassidy Toole 
Food of the Past for the Health of the Future: The Benefits of a Paleolithic Diet in College Students 
Advisor: Lisa Locasto

Lauren Walk 
Manipulation of Iron Oxide Powder Suspended in a Hydrogel 
Advisor: Rika Carlsen

Andrew Wisnkeski 
The Impact of Salary Allocation on NHL Team Success 
Advisor: John Clark

2015 Honors Theses

Frankie Alderson 
Uses and Gratifications of Paranormal Television Viewership: A Case Study of  "A Haunting" 
Advisor: Helena Vanhala

Trisha Brandt 
The Relationship Among Self-Efficacy, Locus of Control, and Life Satisfaction: The Case of College Students 
Advisor: Jill Maher

Garnet Brown
A Study of the Development of Resistance to Ampicillin in Escherichia coli Through Repeated Exposure
Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Nicholas Buzzelli 
Rebel Reporting: A College Journalists' Guide to Circumventing Administrative Censorship 
Advisor: Anthony Moretti

Allyson Copeman 
Exploring Differences in Concentration Levels While Playing Games 
Advisor: Benjamin Campbell

Kathryn Connell 
The  Reintegration of Veterans on College Campuses 
Advisor: Julianne Michalenko

Sara Dinwiddie 
An Ethnographic Study of the Borderlands Influence on the Creation and Development of Carrizozo, New Mexico 
Advisor: Daniel Barr

Mark Gaynord, Jr. 
Popping the Bubble: The Impact of Sports Programming on the Cable TV "Bubble" 
Advisor: John Clark

Aaron Hartman 
The Financial Impact of  Tommy John Surgery 
Advisor: David Synowka

Jenna Hidinger 
Building a Business: Jenna Hidinger Photography 
Advisor: William Shadle

Alexis Jones 
Stereotyping or Segmentation? An Analysis of Children's Advertising Across Networks 
Advisor: Jill Maher

Anne Kandray 
Exploring the Change in Knowledge Level of Undergraduate Nursing Students in Conjuncture with a Foundations of Nursing Practice Course 
Advisor: Janene Szpak

Kory Kozlowksi 
In Bloom: The Rise and Fall of Grunge and Its Significance Today 
Advisor: Julianne Michalenko

George Maldonado 
A Map of the Zombie Apocalypse 
Advisor: Gavin Buxton

Kristina Marks 
NO2 Concentration Levels in the Greater Pittsburgh Area 
Advisor: Daniel Short

Brittany Palac 
Using Mobile Applications as a Supplement to Sustainability Education in Pennsylvania Middle Schools and High Schools 
Advisor: Priyadarshan Manohar

Vanessa Petrasko 
Key Influencers in Federal Government and Their Role in Productivity 
Advisor: Brian O'Roark

Mark Polcha 
Effects of Increasing the Contribution Base on Social Security Solvency 
Advisor: David Hudak

Marulla Quirk 
A Guide to Publishing for First-Time Authors 
Advisor: Sylvia Pamboukian

Casey Riedmann 
Effects of Video Game Exposure to Survey Performance  
Advisor: Stephan Paul

Danielle Scheunemann 
The Role of Tyrosine in Oogenesis in Drosophila Melanogaster 
Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Tanner Sebastian 
From Page to Stage 
Advisor: Barbara Burgess-Lefebvre

Andrew Trapp 
Freedom of Interaction: A Case for the Creation of Touch Screen Compatible Prostheses 
Advisor: Sushil Acharya

2014 Honors Theses

Sarah Burns 
The Feasibilty of an Anaerobic Digestion System at Robert Morris University 
Advisor: Tony Kerzmann

Kristen Garofalo 
Professional Athletes on Social Media 
Advisor: Michele Edwards

Gabriella Gasparich 
Analyzing Cultural and Experimental Factors Influencing Undergraduate American and International Students 
Advisor: Ann Jabro

Carter Khalequzzaman 
Life Insurance Pricing Competition and Simulation Research 
Advisor: David Hudak

Kevin Klus 
An Intuitive Understanding of Social Security
Advisor: David Hudak

Josef Landon 
Production and Performance of Glengarry Glen Ross 
Advisor: Barbara Burgess-Lefebvre

Mackenzie Lawler 
The Moneyball Application: A Statistical Analysis of Women's Lacrosse 
Advisor: Jill Maher

Chris Ludwiczak 
Understanding Sportsbook Behavior and How to Profit 
Advisor: John Clark

Ellen Martin 
Looking Through the Smoke: Electronic Cigarettes and Taxation 
Advisor: Katie Hetherington

Victoria Mikulan 
The Issue of Consolidation in Allegheny County Volunteer Fire Departments 
Advisor: John McCarthy

Kayla Newman 
Social Impact Bonds: Funding for Social Profit Organizations as Explored through the Public Library System 
Advisor: Marcel Minutolo

Rebecca Noal 
A Changing Society: The Strip District in the 1800s 
Advisor: Carolina Loyola-Garcia

Alexander Olijar 
The Relationship between Government Revenue and the Income Tax Rate 
Advisor: Brian O'Roark

Carley Padgett 
Restless Leg Syndrome in Pregnancy: A Systematic Review 
Advisor: Nadine Englert

James Rankin 
Sarbanes-Oxley: America's Financial Law 
Advisor: Victoria Fratto

Philippe Rigaud 
The Development, Testing, and Design of a New Strategy Board/Card Game 
Advisor: Andrew Ames

Lauren Roberts 
Procalcitonin as a Possible Future Biomarker for Bacterial Infections 
Advisor: Matthew Maurer

Alex Romano 
Using Historical Quantitative Data to Rank Football Players in a Fantasy Football Atmosphere
Advisor: Chris Groendyke

Alexa Sarsfield 
The Relationship between Athletics and Business: Using Management Tools to Guide a Team Captain to Success 
Advisor: Marcel Minutolo

Jeffrey Siwik 
Retirement Education: A Necessity for Today's College Students 
Advisor: Robert Beaves

Jennifer Smith 
Sustainability: A Whole New World of Sports 
Advisors: David Synowka & Scott Branvold

Nathanael Tinik 
Examining the Factors Associated with Recidivism 
Advisor: David Hudak

Jaclyn Wilson 
Mathography: The Creative process of Combining Mathematics and Photography into an Activity Book for Middle School Students 
Advisor: Heather Pinson

2013 Honors Theses

Danny Bonaventura 
Perceptions of Assistant/Associate Athletic Directors of Student Athletic Support Services: The Case of the Northeast Conference 
Advisor: Artemisia Apostolopoulou

DaniRae Block 
Biodiversity of Leafhoppers in Western Pennsylvania 
Advisor: Catherine Hanna

Jennifer Broderick 
The Public Opinion and Perception of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Joe Douglas 
Investing in Amateur Talent: Surplus Value and Expected Returns of Top 100 Prospects in Major League Baseball 
Advisor: David Hudak

Brianna Flasco 
We Are...The Precedent: A Crisis Communication Analysis of the Penn State Jerry Sandusky Sex Abuse Scandal 
Advisor: Michele Edwards

Matthew Kreiser 
An Analysis of What the Move to 150-credit Hours for CPA Licensure Means for Pennsylvania Accounting Students 
Advisor: David Hess

Maxwell Morrow 
CS1 Programming Courses: Comparing Objects-First and Procedural-First Approaches 
Advisor: Charles Woratschek

Christopher Murone 
Developing an Informational App for Higher Education 
Advisor: Charles Woratschek

Veronica Radloff 
Educating and Integrating the Public into the Oral Health Community 
Advisor: Carl Ross

Benjamin Ridgeley 
Health Care Reform: An Actuarial Student Guide 
Advisor: David Hudak

Sarah Robb 
A System for Controlled Study of Strain Gradients in-vitro 
Advisor: Melissa Hillwig

Lindsey Sobolosky 
New Urbanism in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries: From the Suburbs to the Inner-City 
Advisor: John McCarthy

Phillip Timcheck 
Effectiveness of Hospital Footwear and Bactericidial Mats in Reducing Bacterial Transmission in the Clinical Setting 
Advisor: Katrina Pyo

2012 Honors Theses

Alexandra Antonacci 
The Story of a Soldier's Adaption: From the War Front to the Home Front

Brent Baburich 
An Exploration of Youth Hockey Development Programs in the National Hockey League 
Advisor: Artemisia Apostopoulou

Julia Bennett 
A Measure of Pre-Service Teacher Attitudes Toward Inclusive Education Before and After Completing a Special Education Course or Student Teaching Semester 
Advisor: Bruce Golmic

Kyle Bradley 
Team Name Selection in Professional Sport: The Case of the Tulsa Shock 
Advisor: Artemisia Apostopoulou

Thomas Boss 
Signaling of Dividend Initiations: Earning Stability During Recessions 
Advisor: Denise Letterman

Nicole Carlins 
Saving Presidential Reputations: Anatomy of Post-War Political Scandals 
Advisor: Philip Harold

Sabine Cherenfant 
Charisma and the Castro Brothers 
Advisor: Philip Harold

Sybile Cherenfant 
Gender Differences in Classroom Aesthetics

Jason Jurich 
The Textbook Acquisition Process: A Study of Pricing and Students Behaviors 
Advisor: Marcel Minutolo

Travis Loncar 
Google It: The State of Search in 2012 
Advisor: Monica VanDieren

Eric Milovac 
Catastrophe Modeling with a Focus on Hurricanes and How the Industry Can Be Improved 
Advisor: David Hudak

Katherine O'Dowd 
Specific Theoretical Predictors of Dysphoria Among College Students 
Advisor: William Kelly

Jessica Olin 
George Washington's Contact with Native American Indians 
Advisor: Daniel Barr

Bradley Perciavalle 
Developing Trap Placement Strategies in Emerald Ash Borer Contaminant Models 
Advisor: William Dress

2011 Honors Theses

Michelle Beamer 
The Future of Social Security 
Advisor: David Hudak

Lauren Douglas 
The Basel III International Banking Requirements: Assessing the Adequacy in Response to the U.S. Financial Crisis of 2007-2008 
Advisor: H. James Vincent

Matthew Feryus 
Actuary Examinations 
Advisor: David Hudak

Brian Gayso 
Corporate Sponsorship Strategies 
Advisor: Artemisia Apostolopoulou

Jennifer Greene 
What Factors Contribute to the Successful Revitalization of Rural Main Street? A Case Study of Imperial PA 
Advisor: Ann Jabro

Heather Lowery 
Analysis of Political-type, Front-page Articles in USA Today and in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 
Advisor: Andrea Frantz

Jean Kalevitch 
I Don't Remember Learning That: The Modern High School Student and Information Retention
Advisor: AJ Grant

Sara Meier 
Student Perception of Sustainability Efforts in Regional SW PA Grocery Stores 
Advisor: Gayle Marco

Tabitha Savka 
Battling the Death of Altruism: A Study of the Non-Profit Organization Donor Relationship 
Advisor: Julianne Michalenko

Sheila Strong 
Follow the Money: An International Study of Tax Havens 
Advisor: Katie Hetherington

Jessica Stubbs 
Motivation: Effects of External Rewards on Intrinsic Motivation and its Application to Restaurant A 
Advisor: Daria Crawley

Evan Wright 
Hierarchy Revisted: The Need Life Cycle 
Advisor: Steven Clinton

2010 Honors Theses

Channing Frampton 
Broadcast Television: A comparison between the stations of Finland and America 
Advisor: Helena Vanhala

Emily Himmel 
Nursing: Universalities and Diversalities, a Comparison Between Nursing in Nicaragua and Nursing in America 
Advisor: Carl Ross

Nicholas Pucci 
Ownership Structure: An Analysis of Publicly and Privately Owned Life Insurance Firms 
Advisor: David Hudak

2009 Honors Theses

Erik Herleman 
A Comparative Study of the Implementation of Total Quality Management Techniques by Small Business Entrepreneurs in Poland and the United States  
Advisor: Cathi Jones

Melissa Wenger 
A Cultural Analysis: Managing a Multi-Cultural Environment within One Building 
Advisors: Diane Todd Bucci and Nell Hartley

Brendan Berkley 
Monitoring an Emerging Australian National Identity and the Role Graphic Designers Play in Shaping It 
Advisor: Ferris Crane

Caroline Ovial 
An Examination of the Exploitation of Males in Magazine Advertisements: A Comparison of the United States and Italy 
Advisor: Jill Maher

James Mike Schellhammer 
Irish Tourism and the Economy: Applying the Government Policies of Ireland to Pennsylvania 
Advisor: Richard Mills

Diane Durkin 
A Comparative Analysis of Retirement Benefits in the United States and Australia 
Advisor: David Hudak