Youngstown State announces 5 new in-depth research programs

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – Youngstown State University announced Thursday several new areas of study available to its students currently or in the near future.

YSU professors were recently asked for proposals to create Centers of Excellence — programs where specific topics can be studied and researched in-depth.

They submitted nine ideas and today, YSU trustees announced five that will share in the $500,000 in funding.

Two of the programs are already available — Materials Science and Engineering, and International Studies.

The other three — Health and Welfare for Vulnerable Populations, Manufacturing Research, and Sports Medicine and Applied Biomechanics — are still in the works.

The Midlothian Free Health Clinic in the First Presbyterian Church on Wick Avenue is walking distance from YSU’s campus. Students involved in the center for Health and Welfare for Vulnerable Populations will work there.

“It’ll afford us an opportunity to put our students in real-life situations of treating vulnerable populations that they may not see out in the hospital community,” said Dr. Jim Benedict, a physical therapy professor.

Dr. Betty Jo Licata, dean of the Williamson College of Business, said the center for International Studies will build on the accomplishments the business school has already made.

“This last year alone, through the efforts of Mousa Kassis, our international trade advisor, we’ve been able to help 17 companies expand their international trade activities.”

Provost Dr. Martin Abraham said creating research-based programs like the Centers of Excellence will help to attract more students and better faculty.

“Builds the prominence and allows us to work in this research area and gain increase in our scholarship and our faculty participation. Brings students in to work with faculty, undergraduate students, graduate students, the whole bit.”

YSU trustees also approved two new degree programs — a master’s in Nursing focusing on gerontology and an undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Intervention.