Bridgewater College seniors receive 2020 psychology awards

Bridgewater CollegeThree Bridgewater College seniors—Lane S. Salisbury, Autumn F. Shifflett and Sarah K. Wampler—received the Donald R. Witters Psychology Awards.

The psychology awards are named in honor of Dr. Donald R. Witters, who retired at the end of the 2005-2006 academic year as professor of psychology, emeritus. He joined the Bridgewater College faculty in 1968 as a professor of psychology and served as chair of the department from 1990 to 1996.

The Outstanding Academic Award was presented to Wampler for superior performance in the classroom.

Wampler, a psychology and biology double major is the daughter of Drs. Benjamin and Sherrie Wampler of Nokesville, Va. Wampler is a member of the Philomathes Society, Bridgewater’s scholastic honor society; Alpha Chi, a national scholastic honor society; Psi Chi, an international psychology honor society; and Beta Beta Beta, a national biological honor society. She is a member of the college’s Flory Honors Program.

She completed an honors research project, “Effect of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Recovery from Traumatic Brain Injury,” with Dr. Erin M. Miller, associate professor of psychology.

The Outstanding Research Award was presented to Salisbury for excellence in demonstrated research and potential to contribute to the discipline.

Salisbury, a psychology major with minors in biology and neuroscience, is the son of Jennifer Salisbury of Frederick, Md. He served as an officer for the Pre-health Club and was an academic coach. He also served on the Conduct Hearing Board.

Salisbury completed many research projects, including a “Sleep Research” project with Dr. Curtis Bradley, visiting assistant professor of psychology.

The Outstanding Leadership Award was presented to Shifflett for initiative, volunteering, reaching out to other students, and potential for continued leadership in the discipline.

Shifflett, a psychology major with a minor in biology, is the daughter of James and Sabrina Shifflett of McGaheysville, Va. Shifflett is a member of the Philomathes Society, Psi Chi and Beta Beta Beta. She served as an academic coach and an academic tutor.

She completed an internship at South River Elementary School with the school counselor Jackie Dunsmore. She also completed a practicum at the Collins Center under the supervision of therapist Margaret Grubb-Hassett. The Collins Center is located in Harrisonburg, Va., and is dedicated to helping victims of sexual violence.

All three award winners were part of a team that completed a research project, “Effects of Gender and Gustatory Reinforcers on Caffeine and Ethanol Self-Administration in Mice,” with Bradley.

Following graduation on May 2, Wampler will pursue a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience at West Virginia University. Shifflett will pursue a master’s degree in psychology from Bridgewater College.

Bridgewater College is a private, four-year liberal arts college located in the Central Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Founded in 1880, it was the state’s first private, coeducational college. Today, Bridgewater College is home to nearly 1,800 undergraduate students.

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