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UW Psychology Student Wins Research Award

May 7, 2009

University of Wyoming graduate student Laran Despain of Laramie has received a regional award for his work on quitting smoking.

The Rocky Mountain Psychological Association selected his paper, "The Impact of Smoking Cessation Tools on Cessation: Telephone Counseling, Medications, and Religious Faith," along with four other winners in the association's annual contest.

A Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Psychology, Despain received a cash prize and professional recognition.

"I was very glad to get professional recognition for my work, especially since I had truly been the lead on the project," he says. "I've always been interested in learning about how people think, and my interests during my undergraduate and graduate careers have led me to believe that I can contribute to the science."

Despain used data collected from the Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center to examine characteristics of Wyoming residents who are trying to quit smoking.

"I found that telephone counseling, medications and higher income all predicted short-term success and that medications, older age and higher income all predicted a month or longer of tobacco abstinence," Despain says.

After finishing his degree, Despain says he hopes to teach or continue his research in the Rocky Mountain region.


Posted on Thursday, May 07, 2009

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