Mike Penkunas is a social research assistant at the Center for Developmental Science. Mike earned his Master’s degree in Evolutionary Psychology at the University of Liverpool and his B.S. in psychology at Appalachian State University. He has previously worked in rural, western North Carolina with children with pervasive developmental disorders and as a kindergarten teacher’s aide. Mike has been involved in behavioral research in school settings in the US and abroad for the past five years. His research interests include children’s perceptions of danger and play as an intrinsic pedagogic mechanism. Mike is originally from a small town in northern Pennsylvania and is excited to be apart of Rural High School Aspirations project.