Luther College junior Ananda Easley was awarded the Psi Chi Regional Research Award for her collaborative research on the psychological and social development that occurs in middle adulthood and how it correlates with alcohol use.
The Psi Chi Regional Research Award is presented by the International Honor Society in Psychology at the April Midwestern Psychological Association convention in Chicago. With roughly 800 submissions to the conference, Easley's research was one of 27 projects selected to receive this recognition.
Easley, the daughter of Dale and Jamie Easley, of Dubuque, is a 2015 graduate of Dubuque Senior High School. She is majoring in psychology and environmental studies at Luther. She has recently accepted a position as a summer research intern at Philadelphia Children's Hospital, a highly competitive national internship program.
Easley worked with David Bishop, Luther professor of psychology, on her project "Generativity and alcohol consumption in middle adulthood." Generativity is a stage in which energies are directed toward community and helping the next generation. As baby-boomers age and there are more middle-aged citizens than ever before, there is a need to know how their actions and attitudes affect their own health and the health of others.
Their research found that generativity is not linearly correlated to alcohol use, as they expected generativity to increase as alcohol use decreased. They found that the most generative individuals were those that had moderate alcohol use regardless of education or gender.
Easley presented her research at the 2018 National Conference on Undergraduate Research in early April and at the annual Midwestern Psychological Association convention, and will present at Luther's student research symposium. The duo are hoping to publish their research and continue to expand on the topic through continued summer research projects.
The duo's collaboration was one of 26 summer student-faculty research projects funded through Luther's College Scholars Program and Dean's Office. The Student-Faculty Summer Research projects provide students an opportunity to research topics of interest alongside Luther faculty. This program is one of a wide selection of experiential learning opportunities at Luther intended to deepen the learning process and that are part of Luther's academic core.
A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,050, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: http://www.luther.edu.