As a result of funding provided by the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, my colleagues and I in the CWI were able to hire Leslie Rieck to work at a postdoctoral scholar in the Biology Department at Lycoming College. A recent graduate of the The Ohio State University, Leslie will be a key component of the College-Community Stormwater Project through student mentoring, research, and teaching. Leslie's graduate work examined "potential linkages between urban-induced hydrogeomorphic modification and: (1) fish assemblage compositional changes over time (3-5 years); (2) fish assemblage trophic dynamics; (3) aquatic-to-terrestrial nutritional subsidies to a common riparian consumer (spiders of the family Tetragnathidae); and (4) downstream drift of larval macroinvertebrates in the water column." I am extremely lucky to be able to collaborate with and learn from Leslie, and I'm excited for what the next few years will hold. Welcome Leslie!
A little insight into what my Clean water institute colleagues and I and Lycoming Students do for environmental education using streams
This video, produced by the PPL Corporation, was done to highlight the PPL Corp's generous support of environmental education performed by the CWI. Professor Emeritus, Mel Zimmerman of the CWI was the PI on the grant that allowed the purchase equipment to expand our ability to perform environmental education activities at the Waterdale Lodge. Environmental education at the Waterdale Lodge is a collaborative initiative between the CWI (and Lycoming College) and the Williamsport Municipal Water Authority. While I was not around when this initiative began, I am excited to support and help expand this ongoing collaboration that benefits school-age children in the area. The main goal is to develop stewardship and an appreciation for maintaining clean water for drinking, recreation, and biodiversity.
Research student Ruric Bowman: first to sfs in salt lake and then off to an NSF REU at Old Dominion University
Ruric Bowman presented his research at the annual meeting of the Society for Freshwater Science in Salt Lake City. He was able to attend after being awarded a $500 travel grant to attend the meeting from SFS in addition to support by the Provost's office at Lycoming College. He was back for 3 days and then was off to participate in an NSF Research Experience for Undergraduate (REU) program in the Department of Ocean, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences at Old Dominion University. The REU program is focused on climate change and sea level rise in a coastal metropolitan environment. He'll be missed this summer, but this experience will serve him best in his quest to attend graduate school studying marine ecosystems.
Lab researcher Brittany Lenze graduated from Lycoming College this year. Brittany studied the effects of soil warming on Canada thistle and won the Biology Department service award for her work at a tutor, teaching assistant, and lab assistant in addition to just plain being an awesome student in the Department. She'll be working on a Master of Professional studies degree in Controlled Environmental Agriculture in the School of Integrative Plant Science (Horticulture Section) at Cornell University this Fall. Good luck Brittany!
My colleagues and I with the Lycoming College’s Clean Water Institute (CWI) were awarded a $258,000 grant from The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations to develop a college-community stormwater partnership model for small urbanized watersheds. The grant will further the capacity of the CWI to support urban stormwater management initiatives by community partners, expand the College’s environmental science curriculum, and provide new research and training opportunities to prepare students for a high-demand area in natural resource management. Further details can be found in Lycoming's official press release: HERE.
We are hiring a postdoc to help implement the teaching and research components of this grant. We are looking for a Ph.D. with expertise in fluvial geomorphology, urban hydrology, stormwater management, or green infrastructure, but candidates with expertise in other areas related to urban stream ecology are encouraged to apply. Details of the position and instructions for how to apply can be found HERE. Please email me if you have any questions about the postdoc position.
While I'm an entomologist at heart, I'm trained as an ecologist. Working at a small, primarily undergraduate institution, I find opportunities to work with great students who may not share my love of arthropods. For example, I'm piloting a long-term deer survey program as a means to support student interest in wildlife biology. Learn more about it on my Research page.
I will be incorporating instruction on the R statistical program in my Fall 2018 Ecology course thanks to an opportunity to participate in the QUBES (Quantitative Undergraduate Biology Education and Synthesis) Faculty Mentoring Network for 'Reducing Barriers to Teaching with R in Undergraduate Biology'. The ability to use the R statistical program is increasingly a requirement for undergraduate internships and employment in addition to being useful for undergraduate and graduate research. I'm excited to introduce this program to my students and hope to expand instruction on R at Lycoming College in the future.