Category Archives: Graduate Student

Michigan Space Grant Consortium Award Recipients Announced

K NevorskiBiology student Kevin Nevorski received $5,000 in funding through the Michigan Space Grant Consortium (MSGC), sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for the 2017-18 funding cycle. Nevorski worked with Amy Marcarelli on this project, “Nitrogen in Space: An Examination of How Nitrogen Cycle Processes are Related in Streams and How Those Processes are Influenced at Multiple Special Scales”. Kevin earned his MS and BS from Central Michigan University before joining the Marcarelli lab in 2016 as a PhD student as part of the NSF CAREER project.

NASA implemented the National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program in 1989 to provide funding for research, education and public outreach in space-related science and technology. The program has 52 university-based consortia in the United States and Puerto Rico.

As an affiliate of the Michigan Consortium, Michigan Tech has been an active participant in MSGC for approximately 20 years. MSGC funding is administered through Michigan Tech’s Pavlis Honors College.

For more information, contact Paige Hackney in the Pavlis Honors College at 7-4371 or visit the MSGC website.


Applications for summer 2017 Portage Health Foundation Graduate Assistantships

Screen Shot 2017-01-16 at 8.39.25 AMApplications for summer 2017 Portage Health Foundation Graduate Assistantships are being accepted and are due no later than 4 p.m. Feb. 14 to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School. Instructions on the application and evaluation process are online.

Students are eligible if all of the following criteria are met:

  • Must be a PhD student participating in health-related research that is aligned with the PHF’s mission
  • Must be eligible for or in Research Mode at the time of application
  • It must be two years after starting the graduate program at the time of application
  • Must not have previously received a PHF Graduate Assistantship

Priority will be given to students originally from Houghton, Keweenaw, Baraga or Ontonagon counties. Non-resident students and international students are encouraged to apply if their health research is applicable to health needs and job shortages of our local community (obesity research, rural health, medical informatics, drug delivery and lab testing, physical therapy, etc.).

These assistantships are available through the generosity of the Portage Health Foundation. They are intended to recognize outstanding PhD talent in health-oriented research areas. Applicants should be catalysts for promoting and improving the overall health of residents in Houghton, Keweenaw, Baraga and Ontonagon counties through one of the following:

  • Health research and technology development
  • Health education or preventive and wellness initiatives
  • Rural healthcare access, informatics and assessment of care

Students who receive full support through a PHF Graduate Assistantship may not accept any other employment. For example, students cannot be fully supported by a PHF Graduate Assistantship and accept support as a GTA or GRA.



Robert Larson awarded AAS-Lundbeck Research Fellowship


Robert-LarsonRobert Larson
, PhD student in Biological Sciences, has been awarded the 2016  AAS-Lundbeck Research Fellowship as announced on their website.   His research is titled ” Targeting Cardiac Sympathetic and Renin Angiotensin Systems with Ang-(1-7) in Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy” which will be completed in the Department of Internal Medicine at The University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine with Dr. Mark Chapleau.

The Summary of his research:

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a relatively common inherited disease characterized by cardiac hypertrophy (enlarged heart), fibrosis, and dysfunction. Patients with HCM exhibit abnormal neural reflex control of blood pressure and heart rate, and are at high risk of developing heart failure, arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. Current treatment strategies primarily target symptoms and not development of the disease. We propose a novel treatment strategy with Angiotensin-(1-7), a peptide known to diminish sympathetic nerve activity and the pro-fibrotic and pro-hypertrophic actions of angiotensin II. We hypothesize that a combination of sustained inhibition of cardiac sympathetic activity and inhibition of adverse cardiac actions of angiotensin II will act synergistically to prevent or reverse cardiac fibrosis, hypertrophy and arrhythmias in HCM. We will test this hypothesis using an established mouse model of HCM, in which a human mutation is targeted selectively to the heart.

Robert will be completing his degree under Kineseology and Integrative Physiology Adjunct Professor Qing-Hui Chen this summer.

Congratulations from Biological Sciences!


Rupsa Basu takes awards in 3 minute thesis competition

BasuFrom Tech Today

The Graduate Student Government and the Grad School would like to congratulate the following winners of the 2016 Three Minute Thesis Competition held last Thursday:

Masters Divison:
First Place, $500- Ekramul Ehite (ME-EM)
Runner Up, $250- Abhilash Kantamneni (CS)
People’s Choice, $100- Abhilash Kantamneni (CS)

PhD Division:
First Place, $500- Rupsa Basu (Biology)
Runner Up, $250- Zichen Qian (Bio Med)
People’s Choice, $100- Rupsa Basu (Biology)


Biology graduate student merit winners in 12th ESC Student Research Forum

Cameron Gobl VanGoethemFrom Tech Today

The Ecosystem Science Center congratulates all 36 students who submitted posters to the competition held last week. The posters will continue to be on display in the atrium of the Noblet building through April 8.

Of the eight undergraduate poster submissions, Graceanna Schilz (Advisor: Molly Cavaleri SFRES) won the grand prize with the poster entitled “Effects of Seedling Warming in Tropical Forests.” Gina Testa (Advisors: Jessie Knowlton and David Flaspohler, SFRES) won a merit award with the poster “Avian Community Responses to Stand Age in Northern Aspen Forests.”

For the 28 graduate poster entries, Kelsey Carter won the grand prize for the poster “Plant Physiological Thermal Thresholds of Saplings in a Puerto Rican Tropical Rainforest,” (Advisor: Molly Cavaleri, SFRES). Three merit winners were: Cameron Goble (Advisor: Nancy Auer, Bio. Sci.) with the poster “Fish-Habitat Associations in Tributaries to the Manistee River, Michigan: Implications for Arctic Grayling Restoration,” Colin Phifer (Advisors: David Flaspohler and Chris Webster, SFRES) for the poster “Bird Community Responses to Afforested Eucalyptus Plantations in Argentina,” and Ryan van Goethem (Advisor: Amy Marcarelli, Bio. Sci.) for the poster “Legacy Disturbance Effects in a Lake Littoral Zone: Effects of Stamp Sands on the Structure of Macrophyte Communities in the Keweenaw Waterway of Michigan.”

Congratulations to the winners and thank you again to the many judges involved.




Travis Wakeham awarded numerous honors by Graduate Student Government

travis wakehamGraduate student, Travis Wakeham was recently honored with numerous awards by the Graduate Student Government , including:

Outstanding Teaching Award for his involvement and development of our Anatomy and Physiology laboratories working closely with Dr. John Durocher and Brigitte Morin.

Best oral presentation at the recent Graduate Student Colloquium  that includes an award of  $300.

Best attended oral presentation at the Colloquium that includes an award of $50.

In addition, his picture was featured on the TV website reporting on the Colloquium.

Travis is a Masters student working in the lab of  Dr. John Durocher and conducted much of the research for his presentation in the lab of collaborating colleague Dr. Stephen Elmer in the Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology.