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Faculty Participated in STEM Conference

Posted on Thursday, September 29, 2011

Westminster College faculty Dr. Helen Boylan, Dr. Sarah Kennedy, and Dr. Deborah Mitchell participated in the Pennsylvania Girls STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Collaborative Annual Conference Sept. 24 in Allison Park.

Conference participants included educators, non-profit organizations, and regional and national professional societies.  The goal of the conference was to nurture collaborations among those who promote STEM activities for girls.

Boylan, associate professor of chemistry, and Mitchell, professor of English and film studies, displayed a poster on their upcoming outreach program, "Empowering Detective Girls Everywhere: Giving Girls the EDGE by Linking Forensic Science and Detective Fiction."  The program is based on Boylan and Mitchell's successful cluster course "Tracking the Criminal through Science and Literature" and will target middle school girls, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Kennedy, assistant professor of chemistry, presented a poster showcasing talented undergraduate women who are pursuing independent research in collaboration with faculty in Westminster's Department of Chemistry.  The projects spanned the fields of biochemistry, inorganic chemistry, sustainable chemistry, and analytical chemistry.

Westminster College ranks first in the nation as the "Best College for Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)," according to

Boylan, a Westminster graduate who joined the faculty in 2001, earned her Ph.D. from Duquesne University.

Kennedy, a Westminster graduate who joined the faculty in 2009, earned her Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Mitchell, who has been with Westminster since 1992, earned undergraduate and master's degrees from Youngstown State University and Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University.

Contact Boylan at (724) 946-6293 or email for additional information.

Dr. Helen Boylan
Dr. Sarah Kennedy
Dr. Deborah Mitchell