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Westminster students present at Pa. State Capitol poster conference

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Posted on Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Two Westminster College students were selected to represent Westminster College at the Undergraduate Research at the Capitol – Pennsylvania (URC-PA) Poster Conference held March 7 in the East Wing Rotunda in the Capitol Complex in Harrisburg.

Showcasing the research talents of undergraduate students enrolled in Pennsylvania’s colleges and universities, the poster conference brought together students, faculty and Pennsylvania House and Senate members.

Iris Davis Hall '23, a senior professional communication and leadership major from Niles, Ohio, and Asia Morgenstern '24, a junior computer science and mathematics double major from New Wilmington, Pa., had the opportunity to share their research, network with students from other schools and interact with state legislators.

Hall presented her research poster, “Argumentative Non-Argument: The Combative Rhetoric of Marjorie Taylor Greene.”

“Representing Westminster as a student researcher amongst dedicated and intelligent researchers across the state was a wonderful opportunity,” said Davis Hall. “I am proud that I could present my communication research and rhetorical criticism to those who before had never heard of that type of research. I hope that my research allows people to look at things from a different perspective and lends itself to a larger understanding.”

Morgenstern’s poster, “Monitoring Faulty Power Networks: Leaky Power Domination in Graphs,” summarized her project, which researched how to efficiently place monitors in grids to overcome potentially bad readings in order to correctly monitor an entire network’s power usage.

“This experience allowed me to hone my public speaking skills, as it forced me not only to be conscious of how I was using my time but also to be more mindful of potentially diverse audiences,” said Morgenstern. “Because I had conducted research in mathematics, presenting my research also allowed me to show that math has real-world applications outside of the classroom.”

Davis Hall and Morgenstern’s travel to Harrisburg was supported by Westminster’s Drinko Center for Undergraduate Research. They were accompanied by Dr. Adam Blumenthal, assistant professor of mathematics and computer science.

The URC-PA Poster Conference is an educational event allowing undergraduate students enrolled in Pennsylvania’s colleges and universities to showcase their research talents to the Commonwealth’s key decision-makers. All fields of research are encouraged.

For more information on the event, please visit

Iris Davis Hall, top photo, discusses her poster research, while Pennsylvania State Rep. Marla Brown, bottom photo, asks questions about Asia Morgenstern's project.