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MONT ALTO (Sept. 4, 2019) —  Penn State Mont Alto will host three Faculty and Staff Colloquy Series talks this fall in the Mill Café.

Held in the Heritage Room from 12:20 p.m. to 1:10 p.m, the talks highlight current faculty research. They are open to the public and free of charge. Participants can purchase lunch in The Mill and dine during the talk. Coffee and cookies are provided. Discussion is encouraged.

September 11: The Mathematics of Gerrymandering

Kira Hamman, Honors Program director and assistant teaching professor in mathematics
Kira Hamman, Honors Program director and assistant teaching professor in mathematics

Kira Hamman, Honors Program director and assistant teaching professor in mathematics, discusses “The Mathematics of Gerrymandering.” In the wake of a recent Supreme Court decision (or lack thereof) on partisan gerrymandering, and in anticipation of the 2020 Census, many states are rethinking the way they draw political districts.

“This is, to a large extent, a political and deeply human question. It can’t be answered quantitatively,” said Hamman. “We won’t talk about that part here. Instead, we will discuss the aspects of districting, redistricting, and gerrymandering that math can help with, and how.”

October 9: Is this Economy Too Good to be True?

Mazhar Awan, Penn State Mont Alto lecturer in economics, discusses “Is this Economy Too Good to be True? What Economics has to Say About our Current State.”

“We will cover the basics of the two fundamental schools of economic thought and a middle ground that accommodates points from both schools,” according to Awan. “Present Static, leading, and lagging indicators from the current economy will be presented. A course for action to maintain and improve economic growth for the U.S. will be posited,” he said.

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November 13: Employee Health: Helping Behaviors and Diversity

Rachel Jang, assistant professor in psychology, discusses “Employee Health: Helping Behaviors and Diversity.” Jang’s primary research interest is in the area of employee health and well-being. Her research program spans four interconnected topics: organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), cross-cultural differences, gender differences, and statistical methods.

“In this talk, I will present two studies. The first examines different profiles of giving help and receiving help and explores disparate physical and psychological health consequences between the different profile groups. The second investigates whether individuals’ strain in reaction to job resources differs across 28 cultures. After presenting the two studies, I will briefly explain my future research directions,” she said.

For more information about the events, contact Debra Collins at or 717-749-6112.

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