A weekly roundup of Nicholas School news, awards and grants from Dean Jeff Vincent
It’s time again for graduation weekend, a highlight of the academic year. The Nicholas School graduate student recognition ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday in the Chemistry Lot followed by our undergraduate ceremony at 1 p.m. This year, we’ll also hold an acknowledgment ceremony for PhD graduates, which will be held at 3 p.m. Friday in Love Auditorium. Click here for more details on graduation, including a full schedule. Join me in congratulating all our soon-to-be graduates!
- Speaking of graduation, I would also like to recognize the 12 undergraduate students who earned Graduation with Distinction honors this year. The recipients are Madison Barnes, Kiersten Bell, Lucila Houttuijn Bloemendaal, Schuyler DeBree, Imani Dorsey, Brianna Johnson-King, Thomas Klug, Aurora Krom, Stephanie von Ungern Sternberg Prufer, Sara Snyder, Michaela Stith and Tanner Waters. To read more about their senior theses, check out our story.
- Kudos to graduating MEM student Sydney Fishman for being recently selected as one of nine NOAA Coastal Management Fellows from a nationwide candidate pool. She will complete her two-year fellowship with the Washington Department of Ecology, where she will leverage geospatial technology and policy analysis to improve shoreline armoring regulations in the state’s Puget Sound.
- Sightings of large predators in places they “shouldn’t be” have increased in recent years, in large part because of successful conservation practices. A new paper by Brian Silliman finds that alligators, sea otters and many other large predators aren’t colonizing new ecosystems, but rather returning to what used to be prime hunting grounds for them before humans decimated their populations. The new study was co-authored by Lindsay Gaskins, Qiang He and Andrew Read. Read our story for more on Brian’s paper.
- A new paper co-authored by PhD student Danica Schaffer-Smith and faculty member Jennifer Swenson documents an innovative approach to quantify three-dimensional habitat for migrating shorebirds. The approach can be adapted for tracking water depth and volume fluctuations over broad areas as appropriate high-resolution topographic and optical remote-sensing data become available. It is a tool which is urgently needed for surface water hydrology research and effective water resources management.
- First-year MEM student Tasfia Nayem was selected from hundreds of applicants to serve on the National Parks Conservation Association’s Next Generation Advisory Council. The council aims to bring fresh perspectives and diverse voices to the national park conversation and to develop strategies to engage younger generations with our national parks. Tasfia’s two-year term began last month.
- PhD student Walter Torres received a Blue Waters Graduate Fellowship from the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and the National Science Foundation. The award will provide financial support of $50,000, including stipend, tuition and travel funds, plus 50,000 node hours of supercomputing time. Walter will be working with his advisor, Jim Hench, on understanding the potential mechanisms for anti-cyclonic flows around small islands using coupled 3D ocean circulation/wave computer models.
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