Category: General

Research Excellence Fund Awards Announced

The Vice President for Research has announced this year’s recipients of the Research Excellence Fund Awards, which total $502,378 among 27 people.

Recipients from the School from the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science nd their respective award categories are:

Mentoring Grants Oliver Gailing

Research Seed Grants – Michael Falkowski  and Oliver Gailing

Infrastructure Enhancement Grants Andrew Burton, “Improving Michigan Tech’s Ability to Quantify Stable Isotopes of Water”

Forty-six proposals, totaling $1.2 million, were submitted. “We thank all of the members of the review committee for their important role in this process,” said David Reed, Vice President for Research.

Shekhar Joshi Wins 2011 Research Award

Chandrashekhar Joshi is 2011 Michigan Tech Research Award winner.

April, 2011—Chandrashekhar Joshi, a professor of plant molecular biology in Michigan Tech’s School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, has been named the winner of the University’s 2011 Research Award.

The annual Research Award recognizes a Michigan Tech faculty member for outstanding achievement in research. The award is based on the impact that the researcher has made toward advancing knowledge or the state of scholarship in his or her field, as evidenced by either a sustained productive scholarly endeavor or a single noteworthy breakthrough.

Joshi’s research focuses on understanding how trees make cellulose. “We have been unraveling the process of cellulose synthesis in trees for over a decade now,” he said. “We hope that one day sustainable, renewable and improved bioenergy and other useful products will result from our research.”

SFRES Dean Peg Gale called Joshi “an excellent scientist, mentor, teacher and scholar. His research is groundbreaking, and he passes his knowledge on to others so that they might someday be greater than him.  Shekhar has increased the reputation and visibility of Michigan Tech for quality research through his efforts. He certainly deserves this prestigious award.”

Among those recommending Joshi for the award was Stephen P. DiFazio, an associate professor of biology at West Virginia University. “His work is of fundamental importance in the burgeoning biofuels field, and his expertise is widely respected in the scientific community and beyond,” DiFazio said.

Joshi has contributed to three patents and received more than $6.5 million in research funding over the past three decades, said Professor Laigeng Li of the Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences.  “Just as noteworthy as his sustained productivity in the laboratory are his contributions to foster the advancement of knowledge among students from the undergraduate to postgraduate levels,” Li added.

Joshi said: “I am truly humbled and touched by my selection for one of the most prestigious awards at Michigan Tech,” Joshi said. “Michigan Tech is the place where dreams of building a better future really come true.  I am grateful to Dean Peg Gale, my students, associates and colleagues at Michigan Tech, and friends and family around the world for inspiration, trust and support over the years.”

Vucetich and Bump receive Excellence Award

Associate Professor John Vucetich and Assistant Professor Joseph Bump, members of the Conservation Ethics Group (CEG), were recently awarded the 2011 Michigan State University  Phi Kappa Phi Excellence Award in Interdisciplinary Scholarship . The award specified the highly unique collaboration between the social and ecological sciences with ethics, the large amount of community engagement, and the highly productive research and publication record of CEG members as especially impressive and the main reasons for the award.

PhD Student Tara Bal – On the Road

PhD students Tara Bal and Meagan Harless from Biological Sciences, along with Joan Chadde of the Western UP Center for Science, Math and Environmental Education, put on a Nature Teacher Workshop Tuesday at the Nara Nature Center. Thirty local teachers attended the session.

Bal talked about insects; Harless talked about streams and ponds. The session was based on “Hands-On Nature Activities,” a guide with information and exercises for outdoor and environmental education with children. All participants received a copy of the book.

The workshop was sponsored by the Western UP Center and the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative.

Douglas Jones – Malheur National Forest

Douglas H Jones (Forestry, 1980) has been named as the next district ranger of the Emigrant Creek Ranger District on the Malheur National Forest, Hines Oregon. Doug has 31 years experience with the Forest Service, beginning on the Fremont National Forest in southeast Oregon. Since then he has worked on six national forests across the United States. His most recent assignment was as district ranger of the Spanish Fork Ranger District in Utah.

Originally from Cadillac, Michigan, Doug has a bachelor’s degree in forestry and wildlife ecology from Michigan Technological University. His family includes two grown children and his spouse, Chris, who is an archaeologist with the Bureau of Reclamation in Bend.

Doug enjoys outdoor activities including hunting, hiking, fishing, camping and cross-country skiing. He is also an active member of Ducks Unlimited, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and National Wild Turkey Federation.