Emma Locarnini, from Charles Town, will graduate with degrees in music performance and biomedical laboratory diagnostics. She has served as a clarinet player in WVU Chamber Winds, the president of Mu Tau and as a tutor for the School of Music.
Locarnini also served as a medical laboratory assistant with WVU Medicine, a clarinet teacher at the West Virginia Music Center and an English conversation partner for the WVU Intensive English Program.
Balancing her passions for music and social justice with her interest in science, she has conducted research on inclusivity and diversity in the music industry, novel STI screening technology and is leading the effort to reestablish the Latinx sorority Lambda Theta Alpha at WVU.
She has spent the last three years performing research with the College of Creative Arts studying data to track gender and racial equality in performances at Grand Ole Opry, as well as the various networks of influence that might help an artist reach the Opry stage.
For her senior capstone project, Locarnini conducted a study on the reliability of rapid testing of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae in clinical laboratories, and the integration of innovative technology to combat antibiotic resistance and lower the amount of asymptomatic infections missed during routine screenings.
She notes one of her most rewarding experience at WVU was serving as a paid volunteer with the School of Medicine in January 2021 to help support the University and other health professionals amid the coronavirus pandemic. An opportunity to hone her disease identification and diagnostic skills, she was selected to train and lead 14 of her classmates to administer more than 5,000 COVID-19 rapid response tests to students returning to campus for the spring semester.
After graduation, Locarnini plans to pursue a master’s degree in music at Duquesne University, and ultimately, create a non-profit organization to support youth music programs in West Virginia.