Ben Frechette, a BREE undergraduate intern in 2017 and 2018, now serves as the newest member of the NBC5 First Alert Weather team as a meteorologist.
The VT EPSCoR Policy and Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC) Spring Meeting was held on December 19, 2019. The biannual meetings offer a space for policy makers, decision makers, researchers, federal agency representatives, town and local officials from around the state and region to convene and take an active role in interactive sessions surrounding the Lake Champlain Basin.
Dr. Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux was inducted as a Fellow of the AMS during the annual meeting. As a Fellow, Dupigny-Giroux is among a select group of AMS members recognized for their outstanding contributions to the atmospheric, oceanic or hydrologic sciences over a substantial period of years. An applied climatologist by training, Dupigny-Giroux's research interests intersect several fields including hydroclimatic natural hazards and climate literacy, as well as the use of remote sensing and GIS (Geographic Information Systems) in the fields of spatial climate and land-surface processes. Dupigny-Giroux is the State Climatologist for Vermont.
Vermont EPSCoR hosted a successful Alan Alda Communicating Science Workshop on January 8, 2020.
Patrick Clemins, PhD, VT EPSCoR Manager of Cyberinfrastructure and Partnerships, attended SuperComputing 2019 (SC19), the world's premier conference on SuperComputing and High Performance Computing, in Denver, Colorado from November 17-22, 2019. While at the meeting, he participated in the Campus Research Computing Consortium (CaRCC), a gathering of research computing groups from across the United States that serves to bring the community together to share best practices. The Emerging Centers Track consisted of smaller research computing groups, including those at the Universty of Vermont (UVM) and other R2 and smaller R1 institutions. This provided Dr. Clemins an opportunity to learn from similar institutions while also sharing best practices currently in place within Vermont EPSCoR systems.
Vermont EPSCoR CWDD's Janel Roberge, Education and Outreach Coordinator, and LeeAnn Trusela, Project Manager, led roughly 40 seventh-grade students at Harwood Union Middle School in Duxbury, VT through water quality and site assessment and macroinvertebrate sampling at the school's Lozelle Brook on October 22, 2019. Under the CWDD's guidance, students made observations about the stream sites near their school and collected macroinvertebrates for later identification.
After more than 26 years teaching meteorology, oceanography and other environmental science courses at NVU-Johnson, Tania Bacchus is moving on at the end of this semester.
BREE interns Julyanice Cruz and Pamela Garcia presented the results of their summer 2019 research during the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) Annual Conference that took place from October 31 to November 2, 2019 in Honolulu, Hawaii. This marked the first time that BREE research was presented at a SACNAS meeting, and both posters were highly visited by conference attendees.
CWDD Coordinator Veronica Sosa-Gonzalez, PhD, led a collaboration of EPSCoR jurisdictions during the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) from October 31 to November 2, 2019. The collaboration led by Dr. Gonzalez included seven other EPSCoR jurisdictions, with Vermont, Alaska, Hawaii, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island present at the conference and Nevada, Delaware, and Mississippi sending materials. Representatives from these jurisdictions presented current research and offered STEM students internships and graduate school opportunities.
The BREE Integrated Assessment Modeling (IAM) Team began its Fall Semester round of meetings on September 24, 2019. The meeting, which included members of the IAM and other BREE teams, included an opportunity for attendees to meet new post docs Ravindra Dwidevi, PhD and Takis Oikonomou, PhD.
The BREE Social Systems Team met on September 18, 2019 to kick off their Fall Semester schedule of meetings. The team introduced new Post-doctoral Associate, Takis Oikonomou, PhD. This meeting also provided an update on research performed over the summer as well as preparation for the Policy and Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC) Meeting that will take place in December 2019.
After a busy field season we exchanged lots of interesting findings at the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium. We were fortunate to have Ted Brady, Deputy Secretary, VT Agency of Commerce and Community Development, as our key note speaker. He delivered a great message to our students and scholarship recipients about the amazing professional opportunities available here, and encouraged everyone to consider a career in Vermont.
Dr. Arne Bomblies, VT State EPSCoR Director, was invited to give a three-minute lightning talk on the Basin Resilience to Extreme Events in the Lake Champlain Basin (BREE) project at the National NSF EPSCoR meeting in Columbia, South Carolina on October 29, 2019. The audience was composed of fellow EPSCoR states and jurisdictions from around the country including representatives from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Janel Roberge, Vermont EPSCoR's CWDD Education and Outreach Liaison, led a discussion with students from Barre City Elementary and Middle School in Barre, VT about the life of a scientist on November 4, 2019. The presentation took place in Andrea Bixler's first-grade classroom, where Ms. Roberge discussed the research techniques used by scientists in the field. Students practiced their science skills by making observations about water and stream bug samples.
The BREE Ecological Team held its first Fall Full Team meeting on October 16, 2019. The meeting included members of both the Ecological Team and other BREE research teams, and allowed attendees to meet new post doc Ravindra Dwivedi, PhD. Attendees of the meeting gathered in person and remotely through videoconferencing. The team discussed the upcoming goals for Year 4 as well as publications and other milestones.
On October 14, 2019 CWDD's LeeAnn Trusela and Janel Roberge traveled to Lyman C. Hunt Middle School to aid students in completing a Macroinvertebrate Investigation. Groups of 6th graders were given a mock-up teaching sample and were responsible for finding the macroinvertebrates (and in one case, a very tiny salamander) within! The visit emphasized to students how “real” scientists can do just what the students had done to discover more about the health of local streams. About 40 students made their way through the dual-session day.
On October 15, 2019, CWDD's Education and Outreach Liaison, Janel Roberge, traveled to Richmond, VT to lead Camels Hump Middle School students through a Stated Choice Activity. Roughly forty, 5th grade students had to make choices that impact the health of Lake Champlain based on their preference concerning factors such as Land Use Management and Fish Consumption Advisories. The 45-minute session ended with students sharing out their thoughts on lake governance and management. Teacher, Kerry Young, is planning to invite the CWDD back again in the spring when students are doing their ecology unit for follow-up!
Vermont EPSCoR Post-Doc Liz Doran, PhD encouraged high school-aged girls to see their potential futures as scientists at the Women Can Do! Action Expo hosted by Vermont Works for Women on October 17, 2019. CWDD Education and Outreach Liaison Janel Roberge and CWDD Project Manager LeeAnn Trusela also participated in the event.
Vermont EPSCoR Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs) and Post-doctoral Associates (Post-Doc) gave first graders at J.J. Flynn Elementary School insight into the life of a scientist in October. GRA Caitlin Crossett, Post-Doc Ravindra Dwivedi, PhD, and Post-Doc Dustin Kincaid, PhD joined CWDD Coordinator Veronica Sosa-Gonzalez, PhD and CWDD Education and Outreach Liaison Janel Roberge on October 8th, 16th, and 21st to meet with three different first grade classes.
Patrick Clemins, PhD, Manager of Cyberinfrastructure and Partnerships with Vermont EPSCoR, was an invited panelist at the State Science & Technology Institute Annual Conference (SSTI) on September 11, 2019. Dr. Clemins was a presenter on the panel session titled "Successful Support for First-Time SBIR Applicants". Dr. Clemins outlined the different funding mechanisms that Vermont EPSCoR offers to small business owners and innovators. The panel was sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Other members of the panel included Brittany Sickler (Senior Innovation Policy Advisor, SBIR/STTR, SBA), Daniel Moses (Director, Oklahoma Catalyst Programs, University of Oklahoma), and Steve Konsek (SBIR/STTR Program Director, NSF).