Hastings College students, faculty present papers at national conference

Hastings College students received travel grants and presented papers, and three faculty members presented their work, at the National Communication Association (NCA) annual conference in Dallas, Texas in November.

Seniors Andrew Boge, communication studies major from Johnston, Iowa; Kenzie Shofner, a communication studies major from Maple Plain, Minnesota; and Hannah Moody, a communication studies and psychology major from Seward, Nebraska; received Lambda Pi Eta (LPH) undergraduate travel grants from the LPH national office for their research and work at Hastings College.

LPH is a national collegiate honorary society dedicated to the study of human communication in a myriad of forms. Each year, the national office supports undergraduate research efforts of LPH members across the nation through a travel grant program.

Members of Hastings College chapter of LPH have been awarded more than $3,500 in travel grant money in the last two years.

“The national office has supported our undergraduate research projects more than perhaps any other college in the nation,” said Dr. John Perlich, faculty sponsor for LPH. “Without this support we would never be able to attend national conferences in locations like Orlando, Las Vegas, Philadelphia and Dallas.”  

Boge worked with Dr. Kittie Grace, a professor in communication studies on his project, “Donald Trump is Batman: How Archetypal Appeals Assisted in Determining Our President.” As previously announced, Boge received the Steven Smith award for Outstanding Undergraduate Research Paper.

Dr. Jessica Henry and Perlich, also professors in communication studies, mentored Moody in her project, “’I’m Not a Dog so Please Don’t Whistle’: Implementing a Public Service Campaign to Fight the Negative Effects of Street Harassment.”

Shofner’s presentation, “The Next Generation: Establishing a Foundation for Cooperative Undergraduate Research and Future Publication,” was also sponsored by Perlich.

Shofner received an award recognizing her service to LPH as one of three national student representatives. While Shofner is leaving the national council, her spot was filled by Carly Spotts-Falzone, a junior from Plymouth, Minnesota, who was elected to office during the conference.

The three faculty members also presented research papers, which were juried and competitively selected:

  • Grace presented her work: “Our Educational Legacy: Developing Reclaimative Ethics Within Academic Spheres.”
  • Henry presented her paper: “The Legacy of Forensics: How Forensics Educators Utilize Their Coaching Skills to Lead Study Abroad Programs.”
  • Perlich presented two original research projects: “Using Assessment to Improve Teacher Efficacy in the Reduction of Student Communication Apprehension: An Instrumental Case Study Approach,” and, “The Next Generation: Establishing a Foundation for Cooperative Undergraduate Research and Future Publication.”

Also at the conference, Perlich was elected to a third term on the NCA Faculty Advisory Board for LPH.

Hastings College is a private, four-year institution located in Hastings, Nebraska, that focuses on student academic and extracurricular achievement. With more than 60 majors and 15 pre-professional programs, Hastings College has been named among “Great Schools, Great Prices” by U.S. News & World Report and a “Best in the Midwest” by The Princeton Review. For more, go to hastings.edu.

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