News


Highlights of the visit to Universidad Metropolitana and Universidad del Turabo of Dr. Veronica Sosa from University of Vermont

Wed, 10/05/2016 - 14:09
ANA G. MENDEZ UNIVERSITY SYSTEM VICEPRESIDENCY FOR PLANNING AND ACADEMIC AFFAIRS Student Research Development Center
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NSF announces $55 million toward national research priorities

Mon, 10/03/2016 - 13:19
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has made 11 awards totaling $55 million aimed at building research capacity to address fundamental questions about the brain and develop new innovations at the intersection of food, energy and water systems.

The cooperative agreements are through NSF's Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) as part of its Research Infrastructure Improvement (RII) Track-2 investment strategy. RII Track-2 builds national research strength by initiating collaborations across institutions in two or more EPSCoR jurisdictions. These four-year awards support 27 institutions in 18 eligible jurisdictions.

"These awards represent a tremendous value for the scientific community, as they foster research into some of the most pressing issues facing U.S. society while simultaneously supporting collaborative research programs and workforce development," said Denise Barnes, head of NSF EPSCoR. "Whether by expanding our knowledge of the brain, or by improving how our water, food and energy systems work efficiently together, these projects hold the promise of transforming our daily lives."

The RII Track-2 awards support research while also requiring award recipients to invest in developing a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce -- particularly of early-career faculty researchers.
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Grant Writing "Brown Bag" seminar series.

Mon, 10/03/2016 - 09:09
This monthly forum is designed for a wide range of UVM faculty and staff interested in discussing grant writing best practices. We will cover topics ranging from the procedural aspects of submitting a grant, to tips for finding funding, and practical approaches for improving the clarity of your writing.

The main focus of the series content will be on improving the narrative/text components of a grant proposal. If you are involved in pre-award grant preparation, please consider joining in the conversation. A variety of perspectives and experiences will enrich the discussion.

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Daniel Cliché Receives STEM Scholarship - Caledonian Record

Mon, 10/03/2016 - 09:09

Caledonian Record

Daniel Cliché Receives STEM Scholarship
Caledonian Record
Daniel Cliché, of Gilman, was recently chosen to receive a First-Generation Scholarship from the VT EPSCoR Center for Workforce Development and Diversity (CWDD) at Saint Michael's College. Cliché is a recent graduate of Lyndon Institute and is pursuing ...

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The Outside Story: Dry run - Bennington Banner (subscription)

Thu, 09/29/2016 - 12:41

The Outside Story: Dry run
Bennington Banner (subscription)
According to Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux, a University of Vermont professor and state climatologist, persistence is the difference between drought and other weather conditions. "Even if we got five inches of rain, it wouldn't take us out of drought ...

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Expect the Unexpected: Climatologist Alan Betts explains how climate variability will affect winters across the world - Backcountry

Thu, 09/29/2016 - 11:00

Backcountry

Expect the Unexpected: Climatologist Alan Betts explains how climate variability will affect winters across the world
Backcountry
In the October issue of Backcountry Magazine, atmospheric scientist Alan Betts talks about the implications of climate change on wintertime precipitation in Japan. And while the status of Japan's snow is important, it's part of a larger global-climate ...

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Three Ways of Looking at the Lake: Teams of UVM Researchers Work to Diagnose and Improve Conditions in Lake Champlain

Tue, 09/27/2016 - 22:15
In Willsboro Bay, about nine miles out from Burlington Harbor,
Tori Pinheiro hangs over the gunwale of the UVM research
vessel Melosira and stares down into black water. Like the huge
gray eye of a sea monster, a round concrete weight appears out of
the depths. The steel cable from the boat's trawling winch keeps
turning and the hundred-pound weight emerges into morning
sunshine, dripping. From its underbelly, another line still dangles
into the water. Pinheiro, a research technician, hauls the line, and
pulls onto the deck a slimy-looking black canister the size of a large
water bottle. "This is it," she says, as she turns to a laptop computer
sitting on a fish-dissecting table in the middle of the deck, "one of
our twenty-seven receivers. There's months of data in there."
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Donna Rizzo Inducted into the Vermont Academy of Arts and Sciences

Tue, 09/20/2016 - 13:48

Professor and Vermont EPSCoR researcher earns recognition for service in the field of arts and science.

September 20, 2016

Donna Rizzo, PhD, a Professor at the University of Vermont (UVM) and faculty researcher with Vermont EPSCoR, was inducted into the Vermont Academy of Arts and Sciences (VAAS) on Saturday, September 17th.

VAAS reported that "Dr. Rizzo was nominated because of the quality of her teaching and service as evidenced by all of the awards she has received at UVM. The Trustees were also excited to hear about her research, particularly her work on the problem of pollution in ground water. Her nominator mentioned that she is "...a superb teacher and mentor, inspiring many students, especially women, to carry on careers in engineering" and that "[she is] a critical part of Vermont EPSCoR that is focusing its attention on the health of Lake Champlain."

Dr. Rizzo has performed research focused on the development of new computational tools that are designed to help understand the full impact of human-induced climate change on Vermont's natural systems. She has served as a faculty member in the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences (CEMS) at UVM since 2002, where she has worked on a number of different computational approaches to environmental problems.

Created in 1965, the VAAS is designed to foster a greater participation in both the arts and the world of science in the state of Vermont. Prior to her appointment at UVM, Dr. Rizzo taught English to children in Germany and received her Masters of Fine Art in Studio Art at the University of Florence in Italy. On the science side of things, she received a BS in civil engineering and a Master's degree in the field before becoming the first graduate of the Civil & Environmental Engineering PhD program at UVM.

Several distinguished members of the UVM community were also present for Dr. Rizzo's induction, including Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux, PhD, the Chair of the Department of Geography and Judith Van Houten, VT State EPSCoR Director and University Distinguished Professor. Dr. Dupigny-Giroux introduced Susan Wallace, PhD, the Chair of the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at UVM, who was also inducted into VAAS.



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2017 - 2018 Vermont EPSCoR SBIR/STTR Phase (0) Awards

Tue, 09/20/2016 - 13:48
Vermont EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) has supported research at Vermont's colleges and universities with funds from the National Science Foundation and local sources since 1986. The impact of the EPSCoR program also includes the private sector - particularly small, technology-based businesses.

Vermont EPSCoR will once again provide the opportunity for Vermont small businesses to compete for awards to foster research and development projects which will lead to applications to federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.

Program Overview
The main goal of the Vermont EPSCoR Phase (0) solicitation is to identify proposals that show promise for success in federal SBIR/STTR competitions and that would benefit from financial support and reviewer comments. As such, each proposal should identify at least one federal SBIR/STTR program to which the work is targeted.

* Business must be registered in Vermont.

* The maximum amount of each SBIR/STTR Phase (0) award is 15,000.

* Funding may not be used to support Masters Students' salaries.

* Multiple-year Vermont EPSCoR Phase (0) awardees must take a 1 year break from submission after their third consecutive successful award.

* Awards contingent upon NSF funding for Vermont EPSCoR.

* One award will also be made in areas of interest to NASA using NASA-EPSCoR funds. To show that an area is of interest to NASA, the PI should identify their proposed project with a new or continuing NASA research priority or technology need. This can be done by reference to a URL on a NASA website or by including an email of support from a NASA contact. The project has to include a full-time faculty researcher at a Vermont college or university as a collaborator. Only NASA projects carry this requirement.

VAAS Fellows must have made an extraordinary contribution to the arts, humanities, science, or teaching, per the organization's guidelines. These contributions must have a demonstrable impact on life within the state of Vermont.

For more information about VAAS, please visit www.vaas.us.
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Mike Winslow named Coordinator, VT EPSCoR Center for Workforce Development & Diversity at Saint Michael's College

Tue, 09/20/2016 - 13:48
VT EPSCoR is very happy to welcome Mike Winslow as the Coordinator of the VT EPSCoR Center for Workforce Development & Diversity at Saint Michael's College(CWDD).

Mike has an outstanding career in environmental advocacy, research and teaching. For the past 15 years, he worked as a staff scientist for the Lake Champlain Committee and authored Lake Champlain: A Natural History.

He holds a MS in Botany from the University of Vermont and a BS from St. Lawrence University in Biology/Environmental Studies.

Mike has served on numerous community area committees, and prior to his work with the Lake Champlain Committee, Mike worked for many years in the field of education as a classroom science teacher.

Dr. Judith Van Houten, VT State EPSCoR Director, is pleased to welcome Mike to his new position. "We are thrilled that Mike has joined our efforts and look forward to the perspective that he will bring to the program."

Mike can be reached at mwinslow@smcvt.edu

Please join in welcoming Mike Winslow to VT EPSCoR!
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UVM Spinoff Company Honored as One of Nation's Top Start-Ups at Washington, DC, Ceremony - UVM News

Tue, 09/20/2016 - 13:48

UVM Spinoff Company Honored as One of Nation's Top Start-Ups at Washington, DC, Ceremony
UVM News
GreenScale Ryan McDevitt, co-founder and lead R&D engineer for GreenScale Technologies of South Burlington, Vt., discusses an element of the miniaturized propulsion system for small satellites he developed in partnership with his former doctoral ...

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Eight Students Awarded VT EPSCoR Native American and First-Generation College Student Scholarships.

Mon, 09/19/2016 - 07:46

Students Receive a Total of $40,000 in Scholarships for STEM Scholarships

Eight Vermont college students received a total of $40,000 in VT EPSCoR Native American and First-Generation College Student Scholarships for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) at the Vermont State House.

Patricia Moulton, then Secretary of the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development, presented the students with their awards and encouraged them to consider a career in Vermont. The location in front of Vermont's capital city of Montpelier served as a reminder to students of the many career opportunities available to them in the state. Initiatives such as this scholarship program serve to help improve the quality of the STEM workforce in Vermont.

The VT EPSCoR Center for Workforce Development and Diversity (CWDD) at Saint Michael's College offers these scholarships on an annual basis as a way of encouraging a diverse range of students to pursue STEM careers. The competitive scholarships help to defray college expenses and enable young Vermonters to pursue degrees and careers focused on STEM fields.

Each of the students selected for a scholarship has shown an interest in pursuing a STEM career and is either of Native American ancestry or the first in their family to attend a four-year college. Individual recipients received a $5,000 award that ensures that these Vermont students will attend a Vermont college or university in the coming academic year, either as new attendees or returning undergraduates.

The scholarships are awarded based on academic standing, an essay written by the students, and letters of recommendation. For more information about this scholarship opportunity or to apply, visit .

2016 Scholarship Awardees:

Emily Cass is the recipient of a First-Generation Scholarship. A recent graduate of Randolph Union High School, she is currently pursuing a degree in mathematics at the University of Vermont.

Daniel Cliche was chosen to receive a First-Generation Scholarship. He is a graduate of Lyndon Institute and is pursuing a major in environmental engineering at the University of Vermont.

Joshua Dam received a First-Generation Scholarship. A graduate of Vergennes Union High School, he is currently attending the University of Vermont in pursuit of a degree in civil engineering.

Kyle Dash is the recipient of a First-Generation Scholarship and is a graduate of Harwood Union High School. He is currently attending Castleton College and plans to major in environmental science.

Steven Gilbeau was chosen for a First-Generation Scholarship. He is currently continuing his education at the Community College of Vermont and plans to pusure an associate's degree in STEM studies.

Ena Ibrisimovic is a recipient of a First-Generation Scholarship and is currently enrolled at the University of Vermont. A graduate of Burlington High School, she is currently seeking a chemistry major.

Bridget Kimsey received a Native American Scholarship. Having completed a Bachelor's in Fine Arts at New York University in 1997, she is not enrolled at the Community College of Vermont, which she plans to use as a springboard into conducting research in pathology.

Erikka Sherman is the recipient of a Native American Scholarship. She graduated from Missisquoi Valley Union High School and is a junior at Saint Michael's College, where she plans to major in mathematics and elementary education.

Applications for 2017 scholarship will open in November 2016. The deadline for applications is April 1, 2017. For more information, please contact:

The Vermont EPSCoR Center for Workforce Development and Diversity (CWDD)
One Winooski Park, Box 137
Saint Michael's College
Colchester, Vermont 05439
802-654-3270
cwdd@smcvt.edu

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Veronica Sosa-Gonzalez Discusses Internship Opportunities with Several Puerto Rico Universities

Mon, 09/12/2016 - 21:22

On September 6-9 Vermont EPSCoR's CWDD Outreach Team Leader Veronica Sosa-Gonzalez delivered talks to several universities in Puerto Rico. She talked to about 150 students at the University of Puerto Rico - Rio Piedras, 40 at Universidad del Este, 70 at Universidad Metropolitana and 20 at Universidad del Turabo.

Veronica discussed Vermont EPSCoR summer internship opportunities as well as her experiences as a graduate student. Each talk encouraged students to get a doctoral degree and to pursue a career in a STEM field.
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9-13-2016 BREE Leader Andrew Schroth on Vermont Edition (Audio)

Mon, 09/12/2016 - 21:22
< img src="http://epscor.w3.uvm.edu/images/2016_headshots/400/andrew1_400.jpg" style="margin-right: 10px; width: 200px" align=left>


Dr. Andrew Schroth, leader of the BREE Ecological Systems Group talks about why nutrients like phosphorus are important to understanding algae blooms.
This program was originally aired on Vermont Edition on 9/13/2016.
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Cloudy with a Chance of Flies: Non-Biting Midges

Tue, 09/06/2016 - 20:11
Clouds of tiny insects, rising and falling hypnotically along lake shores, contribute to the ambiance of warm summer evenings. My recent bike ride was interrupted by a lungful of this ambiance.

If you find yourself in a similar predicament, you might wonder what these miniscule flies were doing before being swallowed, where they came from, whether they bite, and whether we need these interrupters of peaceful lakeside jaunts. We'll get to these questions, but first, let me say that as an ecologist, I find these insects to be among the most fascinating and important freshwater invertebrates.
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Researcher studies how phosphorous travels - St. Albans Messenger

Fri, 09/02/2016 - 12:50

Staff Writer
More stories by Tom
ST. ALBANS — A University of Vermont (UVM) researcher has received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study a key driver of algal blooms in the Missisquoi Bay.

Andrew Schroth, an Assistant Research Professor of Geology at UVM and a Science Leader for the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), received the $247,774 grant to study phosphorous-ion dynamics in the sediment and water of the Missisquoi Bay.

Phosphorous is a major waterway pollutant, responsible for the spread and survival of cyanobacteria, the toxic “blue-green algae” that has begun regularly cropping up in local water bodies.
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August 25, 2016 - Doctoral Dissertation Defense by Justin Guibert

Fri, 08/26/2016 - 15:02

Justin Guibert, a PhD candidate with Vermont EPSCoR, presenting his doctoral dissertation defense on Thursday, August 25, 2016. The defense, "The Impacts of Climate Change on Precipitation and Hydrology in the Northeastern United States," examined trends in precipitation in the northeast and specifically in the Lake Champlain Basin area.
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Getting smart about how we finance disaster resilience

Sun, 08/07/2016 - 03:06
Summary: Today, the White House highlighted innovative ways that states, local communities, and the private sector are investing in disaster resilience.

Across the country, individuals, communities, businesses, and governments are taking action to improve their ability to withstand and recover quickly from extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and other impacts of climate change. Disaster mitigation activities include adopting stronger building codes, restoring floodplains and streams, and retrofitting roofs to hurricane-resistant standards -- all of which help to reduce the loss of life and property and enable communities to recover more quickly in the aftermath of a disaster.

Investing in disaster mitigation and resilience before an extreme event occurs can provide significant cost-savings for homeowners, local communities, the private sector, and the Federal government. In 2005, a three-year, Congressionally-mandated independent study concluded that every $1 the Federal Emergency Management Agency spends on hazard mitigation saves society an average of $4. The 2016 National Preparedness Report estimated that the $8 million that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and The Nature Conservancy invested in the Fisher Slough Marsh restoration project will save that Washington State community up to $21 million over the next 50 years and reduce flooding on as many as 600 nearby acres. The need for these investments is critical. The U.S. has experienced a significant increase in billion-dollar disasters since 1980, and has already recorded eight billion-dollar disasters in the first six months of 2016.
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RACC Team Contributes to Groundbreaking Environmental Law Publication

Sun, 08/07/2016 - 03:05

The Vermont Journal of Environmental Law (VJEL) at Vermont Law School is proud to announce the publication of a timely new set of information and perspectives on the Lake Champlain restoration plan recently approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the federal Clean Water Act.

In June the EPA issued a document referred to as a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) that assigns responsibility to landowners, farmers, and businesses for reducing the levels of phosphorus they are responsible for introducing into Lake Champlain. The "Lake Champlain Edition" of the Vermont Journal of Environmental Law (Volume 17, Issue 4) provides helpful and interesting insights into the scientific, policy and legal implications of this groundbreaking plan.

Editors Trey Martin, deputy secretary of the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, and David Mears, VLS vice dean and professor of law, are joined by an impressive array of scientists, government officials, policy experts and attorneys in presenting a top-to-bottom analysis of the TMDL.

"The 'Lake Champlain Edition' of the Vermont Journal of Environmental Law is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand how science, policy and law are intertwined in the efforts by the state, the EPA and the many Vermont businesses, citizens and farmers who are working to restore Lake Champlain," Mears said.

The Vermont Journal of Environmental Law "Lake Champlain Edition" is available online at vjel.vermontlaw.edu. For more information about the issue, including obtaining a printed copy, email VJEL Editor-in-Chief Joseph Simpson at josephsimpson@vermontlaw.edu. VJEL plans to produce copies for sale and distribution if there is sufficient demand.

The Vermont Journal of Environmental Law's mission is to provide an accessible forum to discuss contemporary environmental legal issues. VJEL publishes articles authored by academics, practitioners, and students alike. In selecting articles, VJEL editors recognize that environmental issues are inexorably linked with many other areas of law and seek to encompass a broad range of viewpoints and attitudes. In addition to publishing quarterly issues and hosting symposiums, VJEL reaches national audiences through its annual Top 10 Environmental Watch List. For more information about the Vermont Journal of Environmental Law, visit vjel.vermontlaw.edu.
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Please tell me the weather - Rutland Herald

Sun, 08/07/2016 - 03:05

Please tell me the weather
Rutland Herald
Much of the Northeast is experiencing drought this summer. It is patchy because a lot of summer rain comes from scattered thunderstorms. Despite periods of drought and heavy rain, our garden here in Vermont is growing well this summer. In part this is ...

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