University of Success Students Learn Physics Through Eye Opening Project
Local high school freshman learned to see the world in a whole new way through an optical physics investigation that was part of the University of Success’ Summer Institute at The University of Scranton.
The investigation involved the students applying refraction of light through thin lenses by building their own telescopes and microscopes. The students mounted lenses on an optics bench to find focus and used light to project an image upside down on a blank sheet of paper.
The 21 students also learned about how the eye perceives objects with a human eye model demonstration. Taught by University physics professors Nicholas Truncale and Declan Mulhall, Ph.D., the investigation was just one class that was part of University of Success’ Summer Institute program.
“I think the program is great for students who do not get to see science in use and interact with university professors,” said Truncale, who believes it is important for students to learn science at an early age.
The University of Success’ two-week Summer Institute is the first step in a multi-year, pre-college program that is designed help the high school freshmen develop the skills needed to apply and successfully gain acceptance to college. The program offers enrichment courses in study skills, SAT prep, public speaking and cultural activities, as well as financial aid and wellness seminars. It also provides lessons in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in a college setting.
“The program was founded by a professor of science who recognized a need for STEM education classes that are sometimes not found in public schools,” said Margaret Loughney, director of the University of Success.
The students from 10 local school districts will return to the University’s campus one Saturday every month throughout their four years in high school.
“The program includes a lot of career exploration,” Loughney said. “We have doctors, attorneys, police officers and people from varied careers meet with students so the they can hear how important it is to get an education to become who they are.”
The University of Success, offered free of charge to participants, is funded almost entirely by corporate and foundation grants from various organizations. Donors include: AT&T, Charles A. Frueauff Foundation, Dime Bank, Fidelity Bank, Kuehner Family Foundation, MetLife Foundation, Overlook Estate Foundation, Peoples Security Bank and Trust, PPL, Proctor and Gamble, Prudential Foundation, Waste Management and Wells Fargo.
The students who completed the University of Success’ Summer Institute are as follows:
Nicholas Aljandro of Cresco, who will attend East Stroudsburg Senior High School South;
Rachel Batista of Scott Township, who will attend Lakeland Senior High School;
Kyleigh Brannon of Easton, who will attend Pocono Mt. West High School;
Raphael Carvalho of Scranton, who will attend West Scranton High School;
Diana Delgado of Scranton, who will attend West Scranton High School;
Maria Eduarda Do Vale of Dickson City, who will attend Mid Valley Secondary Center;
Nicholas Freeswick of Olyphant, who will attend Mid Valley Secondary Center;
Nicolas Hipolito of Scranton, who will attend West Scranton High School;
Shak'ee Hoskins of Carbondale, who will attend Carbondale Area High School;
Kimberly Kovalcik of Scranton, who will attend Lackawanna Trail High School;
Mauri Kurin of Olyphant, who will attend Mid Valley Secondary Center;
Wilber Lopez of Scranton, who will attend Scranton High School;
Fifi Moutoni of Scranton, who will attend Scranton High School;
Marisol Olivares of Covington Township, who will attend North Pocono High School;
Dev Patel of Scranton, who will attend Scranton High School;
Marytere Quintana of Scranton, who will attend West Scranton High School;
Haripriya Ramkissoon of Milford, who will attend Delaware Valley High School;
Brayan Ayala Rodriguez of Scranton, who will attend Scranton High School;
Ivan Urena of Scranton, who will attend Scranton High School;
Zi Xuan (Winni) Weng of Plains, who will attend James M. Coughlin High School;
Tyler Wormuth of Carbondale, who will attend Carbondale Area High School;
Paige Zona of Tunkhannock, who will attend Tunkhannock Area High School.
Rising ninth grade students from 10 school districts participated in The University of Scranton’s University of Success Summer Institute. First row, from left: Margaret Loughney, University of Success program director; Maria Vital, operations manager at the Leahy Community Health and Family Center; and Andrea Mantione, D.N.P., director of the Leahy Community Health and Family Center; and University of Success students Diana Delgado, Fifi Moutoni, Rachel Batista, Mauri Kurin and Wilber Lopez. Second row: Zi Xuan Weng, Marytere Quintana, Marisol Olivares and Kimberly Kovalcik. Third row: Kyleigh Brannon, Nicholas Freeswick, Maria Eduarda Do Vale and Paige Zona. Fourth row: Shak’ee Hoskins, Haripriya Ramkissoon, Nicolas Hipolito and Raphael Carvalho. Back row: Erin Shumbres, lead teacher; Nicholas Caucci, counselor; Alyssa Caucci, head counselor; University of Success students Ivan Urena, Nicholas Aljandro, Brayan Ayala Rodriguez and Dev Patel; Joshua Guardia, counselor; Brianne Lawrence, counselor; and Kelly Judge, assistant teacher.