Meredith Cinnamon, a graduate student in the Department of Merchandising, Apparel, and Textiles, is currently conducting research on firefighter turnout gear durability. This research is a continuation of previous projects by Deena Cotterill and Stacy Klausing that evaluated turnout gear between two and ten years from its manufacture date. Cinnamon's focus is on retired turnout gear, garments that are ten or more years beyond manufactured date. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) mandates the retirement of firefighter turnout gear after ten years.
Cinnamon began her work as an undergraduate research assistant in the Textile Testing Lab assisting on the second phase of Klausing's study of the post-use analysis of turnout gear durability. She traveled with Cotterill as she presented her research. After presenting research on turnout gear ranging from two to ten years past manufacturing, firefighters were curious about the durability of turnout gear beyond the mandated ten year retirement date. This interest provided the spark for the current research study.
Recently, Cinnamon received first place honors in the Herman and Myrtle Student Paper Competition at the 2013 American Association of Textile Colorists and Chemists Conference for her paper focused on her research of firefighter turnout gear. She will be presenting her research at the Interflam International Conference in Windsor, United Kingdom in June. The Interflam presentation will combine her current research with the past research of Cotterill and Klausing.
In regards to the upcoming international conference, Cinnamon stated, "It means a lot that Deena and Stacy both paved the path for me with credible research. The guidance of Dr. Easter and the industry committee have allowed me to have this great opportunity. It is an honor to be given the opportunity to present the entire study at the conference."
Cinnamon will complete her master's degree in the fall and has been accepted in to the doctoral program at North Carolina State University. Her goal is to work in conjunction with Dr. Roger Barker in the Textile Protection and Comfort Center (T-PACC). She aspires to be a professor in textile science.