Ten Nicholas School Undergraduates Earn ‘Graduation with Distinction’ Honors

April 28, 2017

Tim Lucas, 919/613-8084, tdlucas@duke.edu

2017 graduation with distinction photo.jpeg

DURHAM, N.C. – Ten students have earned Graduation with Distinction honors from Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment this year.

The Graduation with Distinction program recognizes undergraduates who demonstrate academic excellence through the successful completion of a senior’ thesis based on a substantive independent research project evaluated by a committee of three faculty members. The projects typically include a 25-50 page written report and a poster summarizing its findings.

To earn the honor, students must also have a 3.0 grade point average overall and a 3.2 grade point average in their major.

This year’s recipients of Graduation with Distinction honors (along with their degrees, project titles and faculty advisors) are:

  • Nina Berlin, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Process Evaluation of Community-Based Microbial Larviciding for Malaria Control and an Environmental Analysis of Larval Abundance in Rural Tanzania,” advised by Randall Kramer;
  • Jeff Feng, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Surface Mining Narratives: Stakeholder Analysis of Miners, Activists, and Community” advised by Charlotte Clark; 
  • Morgan Irons, BS in Environmental Sciences, “The Development of Ecological and Environmental Mechanisms in Sterilized Mars Regolith Simulant to Drive Primary Succession in the Establishment of a Closed Ecological System on Mars,” advised by Daniel Richter;
  • Jessica Kuesel, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Effects of Market Development and Regulation Implementation on the Pacific Rockfish Fishery,” advised by Andre Boustany;
  • Noah Lieberman, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Effects of a Mixture of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons on the Cardiac Development of Embryonic Atlantic Killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus),” advised by David Hinton;
  • Eva May, BS in Environmental Sciences, “Applying Fishery Catch Data to Population Trends and Community Structures in Atlantic Pelagic Species,” advised by Andre Boustany;
  • Kayla Morton, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Marine Protection in the Baltic Sea: An Analysis of the Implementation Duration for Marine Protected Areas,” advised by Martin Smith;
  • Chandra Rouse, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Sustainability and Social Justice: Urban Urgencies in Compact Neighborhood Planning”, advised by Megan Mullin;
  • Jaidev Satish, AB in Environmental Science & Policy, “Does the Country of Origin Matter? Country-Level Factors and Environmental Performance of Firms,” advised by Deborah Gallagher; and
  • Katherine Vayda, BS in Environmental Sciences, “Comparing the Combined Effects of Light Quantity Versus Light Quality Experienced During Seed Maturation and Germination,” advised by Kathleen Donahue.

The Nicholas School awards four undergraduate degrees in cooperation with Duke’s Trinity School of Arts & Sciences. Students can pursue bachelor of arts (AB) or bachelor of science (BS) degrees in Earth and Ocean Sciences; an AB in Environmental Science & Policy; or a BS in Environmental Sciences. Both of these latter degrees provide students the opportunity to pursue a concentration in Marine Science and Conservation.

Fifty-three Duke undergraduates will graduate with bachelor’s degrees in majors offered by the Nicholas School this year.

Jeff Feng and Chandra Rouse completed their Graduation with Distinction theses in December 2016; the other eight recipients’ projects were completed and presented earlier this month.