Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex (KCAC)
The Kopchick College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics is sponsoring a program on April 1 from 4:00 to 6:15 p.m. as part of the
Research Appreciation Week highlighting research projects of Indiana Area High School (IAHS) students and celebrates notable alumnae in STEM.
4:00–5:00 p.m., KCAC Lobby
The session will feature research projects completed by IAHS students, some of which had been completed under supervision of KCNSM faculty.
Awards will be given for outstanding student posters.
5:00 p.m., KCAC Toretti Auditorium
Sharing our stories, creating your stories—accomplished IUP alumni Sharon Cowden, Dana McElroy, and Karlin Toner discuss their successful career pathways in STEM disciplines. The panel will be facilitated by Deanne Snavely, dean of the Kopchick College
of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.
Following the panel discussion, a brief awards ceremony will take place featuring presentation of the 2018–19 Patricia Hilliard-Robertson Scholarship recipient.
Sharon Cowden, an accomplished physician specializing in pediatrics, graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Technology. Cowden continued onto Chatham College, now Chatham University, for a degree
in chemistry and then medical school at the University of Pittsburgh. She completed her residency in pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. She currently practices at CCP Pittsburgh Pediatrics and is actively involved in the Pennsylvania
American Academy of Pediatrics as a board member and physician educator on immunizations and pediatric obesity. Cowden is also a breast cancer survivor and co-created the DVD Strength & Courage: Exercises for
Breast Cancer Survivors, which teaches health care providers and survivors the importance of regular exercise to improve the quality of life and reduce recurrence of cancer.
Dana McElroy graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry and a minor in biology. Her graduate studies took her to North Carolina State University in Raleigh, where she received a master’s degree in
food science followed by a professional career in food safety and public health at Penn State University. While working in public health and addressing foodborne illnesses, McElroy became interested in the field of medicine. She enrolled in another
master’s degree program, this time Physician Assistant Sciences at Saint Francis University. Following completion of her physician assistant degree, she went through rotations in family medicine, internal medicine, behavioral health, general surgery,
emergency medicine, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology. Ultimately, McElroy has focused her work in the field of cardiology practicing in the UPMC Heart and Vascular Institute and finally joined the IRMC Physician Group here in Indiana.
Karlin Toner graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Mathematics followed by masters and doctoral degrees in aerospace engineering from the University of Florida. She began her career with NASA, where
she held several key positions in aerospace planning and research at the Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, before moving on to NASA Headquarters in Washington. She established and managed the Aerospace Operations Modeling Branch,
an organization focused on modeling and simulation of air traffic operations within NASA. Later she was charged with developing long-range technical and resource plans for aeronautical projects. Early in her career, Toner also served as lecturer in
the Aerospace Engineering Department at San Jose State University. Beginning in 2009, Toner served as director of the Joint Planning and Development Office and concurrently as a senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on modernizing the
air transportation system. Since 2014, Toner has served with the Federal Aviation Administration as director of Global Strategy, providing executive leadership in planning and coordinating the goals of the FAA’s international strategy. She provides
direction on FAA’s engagement with the International Civil Aviation Organization to ensure a unified US presence for aerospace standards setting. Toner received a NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal and is an associate fellow of the American Institute
of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
This event is open to the public.