Xi Sigma Pi: Research Grant Winners + New Officers!

After a highly competitive proposal and review process, the Xi Sigma Pi forestry honor society is very pleased to announce the winners of its annual research grants—two for graduate students, and one for an undergraduate—totaling $2,200 in funding for the next year!

Lesly Franco

The top graduate student proposal came from master’s student Lesly Franco, who is working with Professor Ernesto Alvarado, for her project, “PM2.5 concentrations during prescribed burns and possible health effects.” She was awarded $1,000 to help her analyze data collected from prescribed burns and determine if spikes in PM2.5 concentrations during the burns are associated with increased deaths.

Master’s student Mitchell Parsons, who is working with Professor Laura Prugh, was awarded $500 to assist with his project, “Trophic relationships of reintroduced fishers in the South Cascades.” He plans to use stable isotope analysis and isotopic signatures to assess the presence and stability of diet specialization of reintroduced fishers in the South Cascades, and their degree of individual specialization, in order to better manage wildlife reintroductions in the changing landscapes around the world.

Hannah Booth

For her undergraduate proposal, Hannah Booth won $700 for her project, “The relationship between wildfire and the cascading impacts of predators on plants.” Working with Professor Aaron Wirsing as her faculty advisor, Hannah will explore how wolf presence and fire shape patterns of deer herbivory and plant responses, in order to show how abiotic forces such as fire affect predator-prey interactions and their relationship with plant communities.

Congratulations to the 2017 research grant winners, and the many other excellent proposals the committee reviewed!

Also, on Friday, May 19, Xi Sigma Pi inducted its new officers for the 2017-18 year, including Hiruni Jayasekera as forester; Danyan Leng as assistant forester; David Diaz as secretary; Lesly Franco as treasurer; Aoifa Fae as ranger; and Fabiola Pulido as the continuity officer!

Donated Diploma: Noal F. Caywood (’13, B.S.)

A couple months ago, we received an inquiry from Rob Lohrmeyer, who is dean for Career & Technical Education at Lewis-Clark State College in Idaho, about whether we’d be interested in an old framed diploma from one of our early alumni, Noal F. Caywood, who graduated with a bachelor’s in forestry in 1913. Rob didn’t attend SEFS—though he did earn a bachelor’s in forestry from the University of Montana—but he had purchased the diploma at an auction in Lewiston, Idaho, in the late 1970s and was looking to clear some storage.

We were immediately intrigued, and earlier this week Rob and his wife passed through Seattle and dropped off the diploma. The glass on the frame broke and was removed years ago, and the paper is in fairly rough shape, but it is still clearly legible—including the signature of Thomas Kane, president of the university at the time.

Rob had done some searching to try to learn more about Noal, and the most recent record he found was an August 23, 1936 issue of The Salt Lake Tribune announcing that Noel, with an “e,” and his wife were relocating to Salt Lake City from Spokane, Wash. We were able to find a record of his graduation, his membership in the Xi Sigma Pi forestry honor society while in school, and a possible note about him working as a logging engineer in Everett around 1922. We are fairly confident, as well, that he was born in Avon, Ind., in 1889 and lived until 1976. Then there’s a 1940 U.S. Census record of a Noah F. Caywood—also from Indiana, and also 50 years old, as Noal would have been—living with his wife Gertrude in Spokane. He lists his occupation as a “forest engineer” working in “government forestry.” Certainly sounds like Noal, though beyond that we haven’t had much luck.

All of which is to say we’re very grateful to Rob for generously donating this piece of our history, and we hope we’re able to track down more of Noal’s story!

Xi Sigma Pi Research Grants: Apply by May 1!

This spring, the Xi Sigma Pi Forestry Honor Society will award two grants of up to $1,000 each to support graduate and undergraduate research for students currently enrolled at SEFS. These grants are based on merit and financial need and will be applicable for research activities and/or equipment that is otherwise unattainable by the student.

The deadline to apply for these grants is Monday, May 1, by 11 p.m., so learn more about the application process below and get your packets together!

To apply, please include the following items in the grant application packet:

  1. A resume no longer than 2 pages, single-spaced. It should include the following information:
    1. Education history
    2. Work history
    3. Achievements
    4. Volunteer work
  2. Letter of recommendation from an advisor, committee member or influential faculty member. The author must email this document separately to xsp@uw.edu before May 1, 2017, at 11 p.m.
  3. Current transcript (unofficial or official).
  4. Proposal for Research Grant that does not exceed 3 pages, double-spaced (excluding works cited)
    1. Title
    2. PI and Co-PI with contact information
    3. Project description:
      1. Objectives and significance of project
      2. Methods to be employed
      3. Anticipated outcome and effect of project fulfillment
      4. Broader impacts associated with the project
      5. Timeline of the project completion and deliverables
      6. Works cited
    4. Statement of financial need with budget of the specific proposed project

Include in the budget ONLY the expenses for your project, which are to be funded by the XSP grant, including but not limited to: equipment, travel, lodging, material, supplies and/or any other pertinent research activities. If you have received any scholarship or funding to fund the rest of your research, make sure to mention it here. You may want to include a brief narrative of expenses along with a table of individual cost components.

This year the grants are worth up to $1,000 dollars each, and the application process will run until May 1, 2017 (11 p.m).

The complete grant application packet can be dropped off in person to David Campbell or Lisa Nordlund in Anderson Hall rooms 116/130, OR uploaded directly onto catalyst by the due date.

If you have any questions about the grant process, email xsp@uw.edu!

Xi Sigma Pi Research Grants: Apply Now!

This spring, the Xi Sigma Pi forestry honor society is offering two $1,000 research grant awards for SEFS undergraduate and graduate students!

Xi Sigma Pi Research Grants $2,000All students currently enrolled in SEFS are eligible to apply, and the grants will be awarded based on merit and financial need for research activities and equipment. It’s a great way to boost your research program, and also to gain experience with the proposal process!

All applications are due by 5 p.m. on May 8, and grant recipients will be notified later that month. You can upload your application online via catalyst or drop off a completed packet to David Campbell or Lisa Nordlund in Anderson 116/130.

Email xsp@uw.edu if you have any questions, and good luck!

Proposal Instructions
Please include the following items in the grant application packet:

  1. A resume no longer than 2 pages, single-spaced, and which includes the following information:
    a. Education history
    b. Work history
    c. Achievements
    d. Volunteer work
    e. Do not include references
  2. Letter of recommendation from advisor, committee member or influential faculty member. The author must email this document separately to xsp@uw.edu before 5 p.m. on May 8.
  3. Current transcript (unofficial or official).
  4. Proposal for Research Grant that does not exceed 3 pages, double-spaced (excluding works cited)
    a. Title
    b. PI and Co-PI with contact information
    c. Project description:
    i. Objectives and significance of project
    ii. Methods to be employed
    iii. Anticipated outcome and effect of project fulfillment
    iv. Timeline of the project completion and deliverables
    d. Statement of financial need with budget of the specific proposed project
    e. Other funding sources or scholarships received
    f. Works cited

Special Lecture: Niall McCann

Coming up on Tuesday, March 10, Xi Sigma Pi, the forestry honor society at SEFS, is excited to welcome Niall McCann to campus for a special lecture! McCann is a conservationist and adventurer who hosts the television show Biggest and Baddest. He grew up in England and studied zoology at the University of Bristol, and he is currently completing his doctoral work in zoology on Baird’s tapir at Cardiff University.

Niall McCannHis lecture, “Life on the Conservation Front Line,” will run from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in Kane Hall 130. It’s free and open to the public, and no advance registration is required, so come join us after work!

About the Talk
In “Life on the Conservation Front Line,” McCann describes his adventures working in endangered species research in remote and challenging environments across the world, and how he has been able to bridge the gap between science and policy and have a direct impact on international conservation. With stories about capturing man-eating crocodiles in Uganda, and 18-foot-long anacondas in Guyana, to working with gun-wielding cowboys in wild-west Honduras, and exploring never-before-seen parts of the Amazon, “Life on the Conservation Front Line” is a rip-roaring tale of adventure; but it is also an homage to the importance of conservation, and a testament to how much a young scientist can achieve in terms of influencing government policy on the sustainability of our planet.

Photos © Niall McCann.

Niall McCann

Xi Sigma Pi Presents “Tour de Labs”

Coming up next Friday, November 21, Xi Sigma Pi will be hosting “Tour de Labs” to showcase some of the incredible research going on at SEFS!

Xi Sigma PiThe event will begin with brief lab presentations in Anderson 22 from 3 to 3:30 p.m., followed by guided lab tours from 3:30 to 4:30, and then a pizza party and social hour back in Anderson 22 from 4:30 to 5:30.

All students, staff and faculty are invited to take part, and Tour de Labs is an especially great opportunity to network and learn about research opportunities—including ideas for capstones. The Bakker, Bura, DeLuca, Ettl, Franklin and Resende labs are all participating, so come out and see what your colleagues are up to!

Email xsp@uw.edu to learn more about the event.

Alumni Career Mentoring Event: April 16

Coming up on Wednesday, April l6, Xi Sigma Pi and the SEFS Alumni Group are co-hosting a career mentoring session for students to network with alumni working in the public and private sectors.

Xi Sigma PiThe event, to be held from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Forest Club Room, will feature representatives from a number of industry employers—including Weyerhaeuser, King County, and the Stockholm Environmental Institute—as well as a mix of alumni at various career stages, and who earned undergrad and/or graduate degrees from SEFS.

Coffee and snacks will be provided, and at the end of the official session, students and alumni can head over to Big Time Brewing Company for some more casual networking!

You aren’t required to RSVP to attend, but if you’re able to sign up beforehand that will greatly help organizers anticipate numbers and better match students to alumni. If you have any questions about the event or wish to get involved, email Natalie Footen of Xi Sigma Pi. Otherwise, register now!

Xi Sigma Pi Announces Research Grant Winners for 2013

Xi Sigma PiXi Sigma Pi, the Forestry Honor Society founded at the University of Washington in 1908, is proud to announce the recipients of this year’s research grant funding. After long and hard deliberation, and the careful review of many highly competitive proposals, the following winners were selected:

Two First Place Winners of $500 each:
Oliver Jan, “A mechanistic approach towards lignin char reduction and valorization in catalytic fast pyrolysis through bifunctional Pd/ZSM-5 catalysts” (Faculty Advisor: Fernando Resende)

Luyi Li, “The effects of soil parent material and fertilization treatment on the wood quality of Douglas fir in the Pacific Northwest” (Faculty Advisor: Eric Turnblom)

Second Place Winner of $250:
Sebastian Tramon, “The mystery of conservation outcomes: Looked through institutional lenses” (Faculty Advisor: Clare Ryan)

Undergraduate Research Winner of $250:
Raymond Yap, “Colonization, degradation of Trichloroethylene and comparison of phytotoxicity in plants inoculated with endophyte PDN3” (Faculty Advisor: Sharon Doty)

Congratulations to all of the grant recipients, and Xi Sigma Pi extends a big thank you to the grant review committee!

Graduate Student Symposium: Save the Date!

Graduate Student SymposiumThe date is set—Friday, March 8, 2013—and final details are coming together for the 10th Annual Graduate Student Symposium at the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences (SEFS)!

Held in the Forest Club Room, the annual symposium is a day dedicated to graduate students and their research. It is organized by and for graduate students, with the support of the Xi Sigma Pi Forestry Honor Society.

At this day-long event, we highlight the work of our graduate students through presentations and a poster session. We also invite outside panelists, often SEFS alumni, to present on a topic of interest. Ultimately, the symposium provides graduate students with the opportunity to present to their colleagues and professors, and gain valuable experience and feedback. This year’s theme is the Future of Forestry, so we will be asking panelists questions about what the future holds for the field, and we will hear from our future foresters and researchers at SEFS.

The Graduate Student Symposium runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and a tentative schedule of events is now available online. If you are still interested in submitting an abstract for a poster or presentation, please contact Ellen Weir. There will be an award ceremony recognizing the best presenters and posters at the symposium.

So join us on March 8 and celebrate your colleagues’ projects and research, and the success of our field today and for years to come!

For more information, contact Maria Sandercock or Miku Lenentine.