Presenting research: Students participate in annual capstone event April 15-18

Liberty University students from all different backgrounds and majors gathered to present their research projects April 15-18 at the Jerry Falwell Library for Research Week.

The research projects included everything from poster and oral presentations to performing arts, juried art, aviation and 3MT (three-minute thesis) presentations.

Most of these projects took a semester or more of dedication from both students and their faculty advisors to develop.  Some projects were required for class while others were done for field experience.

Research week started with the keynote address from Dean of the School of Communication & the Arts Scott Hayes. Hayes’ keynote address was followed by a “Welcome Reception” to greet students and their families/friends.

Morgan Forehand, a senior studying performing arts, created a 15-minute performance based off a “conceptual metaphor” she was given at the start of the semester. Forehand took the concept of “Victorian caged birds” and connected Victorian movements with bird movements through her script, feathery costumes and the actors’ movements.

Forehand said, “Choices are so fun,” and went on to explain how being creative should always be done with excellence.

Similarly, the aviation department expressed the importance of excellent work through its Aviation Safety Forum, which included presentations for Capstone (AVIA 491) and the Honors Program. The Aviation Safety Forum included everything from aircraft safety to AI and pilot fatigue research.

“It is an honor and a privilege to participate in Research Week and, subsequently, represent your respective program well,” Owen Topolnicki, who presented on the A-10 aircraft, said.

Topolnicki went on to share how he had always been interested in military aviation, and was very pleased with the research process and opportunity to advocate for a problem he saw in the industry.

Many other students said they enjoyed being part of research week and would recommend it to their peers.

Molly Warfield, a chemistry major at Liberty shared about her passion for the chemistry industry and finding greener alternatives.

“I specifically am super excited to do this application because I want to go into a master’s program … this is going into my portfolio,” Warfield said.

Warfield went on to express how excited she was that LCA students came by to see some of their research presentations. A few LCA students even stated that they were going into AP chemistry in the fall, which is where Warfield found her passion for science.

Another student who expressed passion for his research was Tanner Bohan, who is pursuing his Masters in athletic training. Bohan picked his topic, Forefoot Gait Retraining as an Intervention for Patellofemoral Pain, because of his past with coaching track and field.

“This was a fun experience,” Bohan said. “This is something that I can implement into practice when I get in job, and I found that it actually helped athletes.”

Bohan also stated that he enjoyed the research process because he cared about his topic and was able to see actual results from his data collection.

The Research Week awards will be held May 1 in the Lower Atrium and conference room of the Jerry Falwell Library.

To learn more about Research Week or how to get involved next time, visit this website or contact 

Nichols is a news reporter for the Liberty Champion

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *