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Psychology raises its profile at tenth annual conference

By Sally Jongsma

It’s been ten years since the first psychology Student Research conference was held on campus. Each year students from Dr. Sherri Lantinga’s experimental psychology class present the research they’ve done during the fall semester. Presentations this year included the effects of swimming on memory, the effects of a puppy on mood, and the effects of advertising on four-year olds’ cereal consumption.

This year the department invited not only current students and faculty but also psychology alumni. Those who live close enough were invited to the Campus Center to hear the presentations, see displays, talk with students, and enjoy cake and coffee. Those who live too far away or who couldn’t get to campus on December 13 were invited to visit the conference website. Alums were also asked to share notes of encouragement with those about to embark on careers in the field of psychology.

The presentations were accompanied by cake and coffee as a way to highlight other efforts planned to increase campus and community awareness about what students can do with a psychology major. Plans are underway to hold a spring lecture series that will focus on a topic of interest both to Dordt students, the community, and high school students. One tentative topic being considered for this spring is Alzheimers disease.

By inviting psychology alumni to the annual conference, faculty hope not only to connect their students with alumni professionals, but also to begin to lay the groundwork for a Psychology Alumni Scholarship. Dordt does not have a specific scholarship for psychology majors, and the department would like to see that change. They hope alumni will feel the same way.