April 15, 2013 12:00AM
As a nursing student at Pittsburg State University, senior Jessica Criser is often thinking about how to improve the practice for current and future patients. Recently, she’s spent a lot of time thinking about how to make the infant immunization process a little bit easier.
“One of the main reasons parents don’t immunize their infants is because it hurts so much,” Criser said. “So, what I wanted to do was research to find ways to make the shots less painful.”
Criser presented her findings Monday during the 2013 Research Colloquium, which featured more than 60 poster and oral presentations. Undergraduate and graduate students from nearly all academic disciplines participated in the annual event, which aims to increase awareness of and celebrate the research activities taking place at PSU.
The PSU Office of Graduate and Continuing Studies hosted the colloquium. Pawan Kahol, dean of graduate and continuing studies, applauded the students for the time and effort they put into their research projects.
“The more we do research and the more curious we are about the world around us,” he said, “the more this world starts to make sense to you. Research is a critical tool for deep thinking, and we should always strive to think deeper and deeper.”
Criser praised the university for offering the students a chance to present their research.
“The importance of research is that it helps promote this idea of lifelong learning,” she said. “Doing a project like this sparks that interest and motivation to keep up on professional journals and the research that others in the field are doing. The nursing profession can change so quickly year to year, and it’s important to always keep learning and keep researching the best methods and new technology.”
Alyssa York, senior communication major, was part of a trio of students who presented a comprehensive strategic plan for the PSU Department of Communication. She said she enjoyed the research process and is proud of the effect it may have on the university.
“It was a unique opportunity for us, as students, to do research that will truly have an impact on the future of the university,” she said.
Prizes are awarded for the best oral and poster presentations, which are judged by members of the PSU faculty. The winners will be announced on Wednesday, April 24, at the Graduate School and Research Awards Banquet. The banquet begins at 6 p.m. in the Overman Student Center.