New Kensington faculty, staff honored for publications, awards and promotions

Annual celebration recognizes accomplishments
Professor looks at papers on table

Richard Harnish, professor of psychology at Penn State New Kensington, peruses publications at the 21st annual Faculty Publications Party, held in the campus' Elizabeth S. Blissell Library. 

Credit: Rebecca Dietrich

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. — Penn State New Kensington honored campus faculty and staff at the 21st Faculty Publications and Promotions Party held in the Elizabeth S. Blissell Library on Dec. 6. The annual celebration was organized and led by Jennifer Gilley, interim co-director of the Penn State Commonwealth Campus Libraries and head librarian at the New Kensington campus. The full listing can also be found on a 2023 Faculty Publications webpage

2023 honorees 


  • Donald Bruckner, professor of arts and humanities, authored “Harm-Based Arguments for Strict Vegetarianism,” in New Omnivorism and Strict Veganism: Critical Perspective. 
  • Javier Gomez-Calderon, professor emeritus of mathematics, authored “O A Survey on Cyclotomic Subfields,” for the Far East Journal of Mathematical Sciences. 
  • Craig Hammond, assistant director of academic affairs and associate professor of arts and humanities, authored “Inveterate Imperialists: Contested Imperialisms, North American History, and the Coming of the U.S. Civil War,” in Continent in Crisis: The U.S. Civil War in North America. 
  • Richard Harnish, professor of psychology, co-authored “Toward Better Understanding the Materialism-Hedonism and the Big Five Personality-Compulsive Buying Relationships: A New Consumer Cultural Perspective” for the Journal of Global Marketing; and “Purchasing Under the Influence of Alcohol: The Impact of Hazardous and Harmful Patterns of Alcohol Consumption, Impulsivity, and Compulsive Buying,” for Psychology Reports. 
  • Rujirutana Mandhachitara, associate professor of business and economics, presented “Boys’ Love Genre: A New Wave of Asian Pop Culture Phenomenon,” at the 50th Annual Northeast Business and Economics Association Conference. 
  • Joie Marhefka, program coordinator and associate teaching professor of biomedical engineering technology, authored two articles for TechNation, including, “The Future: Never Too Young to Hear About HTM” and “Networking and Other Job Search Tips,” as well as co-authored, “Hands-Off: Perceptions of Biomedical Engineering Technology Internships under a Global Pandemic,” which was presented at the 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition. 
  • Penelope Morrison, associate professor of biobehavioral health, co-authored two articles, “Co-occurring Substance use and Intimate Partner Violence in Pregnant and Postpartum Women: A Systematic Literature Review,” for the Journal of Family Violence, and “Gains Made by Men Attending a Battering Intervention Program: Insights From Exit Letters Written by BIP Clients From 1990 to 2015,” for Partner Abuse. 
  • Becky Morrow, assistant teaching professor of biology, co-authored, “SARS-CoV-2 Prevalence and Variant Surveillance among Cats in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA,” in Viruses. 
  • Lauren Pearce, assistant professor of physics, co-authored two publications for Physical Review, “Testing high scale supersymmetry via second order gravitational waves” and “Fireball baryogenesis from early structure formation due to Yukawa forces.” 
  • Douglas Starr, adjunct instructor of music, composed, “All Saints Requiem” and “Wilderness Cantata,” which can be found on Bandcamp.  
  • JW Tabacchi, director of student affairs, co-authored “Campus Racial Justice and Decolonization Expectations Project,” for College Educators International (ACPA). 
  • Haifeng Wang, assistant professor of electro-mechanical engineering technology, co-authored “Impacts of Course Culture on Student Creativity Development in Engineering Course Projects,” which was presented at the 2023 IEEE ASEE Frontiers in Education Conference, and co-authored “Power Management Systems for Triboelectric Nanogenerators,” in the Handbook of Triboelectric Nanogenerators. 


  • Joseph Cuiffi, associate teaching professor of electro-mechanical engineering technology 
  • Kristen Pueschel, associate teaching professor of mathematics 


  • Joseph Cuiffi, George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching 
  • Steve Evanchec,, Penn State New Kensington Excellence in Teaching Award (Full-Time) 
  • David McGeary, Penn State New Kensington Excellence in Teaching Award (Part-Time) 


  • Penelope Morrison, awarded sabbatical for the fall 2023 semester