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NEW WILMINGTON, PA( – Kayla Ammons, a senior broadcasting major, received an undergraduate research grant from Westminster College’s Drinko Center for Undergraduate Research.

Ammons’ documentary project, “Looking How Japanese Culture (Cosplay) has Become Popular in the U.S.,” examines the rise of cosplay—the practice of dressing like favorite characters from comics, anime, video games, movies and television shows—and why it is becoming more common in America.

The grant allowed Ammons to attend two anime conventions—Otakon in Washington, D.C., and Matsuricon in Columbus, Ohio—during August to gain footage for her documentary.

What was once considered an underground activity, cosplay has become more mainstream in America and are now common at events like the San Diego Comic Con—widely considered the largest and most influential comic book conventions in the nation.

“Not many people knew about it, but now more and more have become more interested in cosplay,” she said. “It definitely has become ‘Americanized.’”

Ammons said that through her research grant, she was able to further develop her filming, interviewing and project management skills.

Ammons, a 2015 graduate of Victory Christian School, is the daughter of John and Susan Ammons of Cortland, Ohio.

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