The Insider: College of the Environment Newsletter

From Dean Graumlich

Dean Graumlich

I am delighted to report that the College of the Environment is having another banner year for research funding. In the latest report by the Office of Research, the College has been awarded $77M in grants and contracts in July to October FY12.  At this point we are second only to the School of Medicine in new grants and contacts. Congratulations to all of you who helped make this possible! This is great in terms of deanly bragging rights, yet even more exciting is the way the College is translating research into products and practices that are critical for the well-being of people and ecosystems.  While there are literally hundreds of examples I could cite here, the projects below give you a hint of the scope of what our faculty are accomplishing.

This month we announced an exciting new venture funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, to create a prototype earthquake early warning system for the Pacific Coast of the US. The project is a joint effort with UC Berkeley and CalTech, in collaboration with USGS. The Pacific Northwest Seismic Network, housed in the Department of Earth and Space Sciences, will receive $2 million for this project, which is a very real example of how our work ensures human safety across the region.

The College uses its research to benefit our local communities as well, through such projects as ECOSEL, a groundbreaking approach to conservation of forestlands.  ECOSEL allows individuals or organizations to bid for individually selected forest ecosystem services (e.g., old forest habitat, views, carbon sequestration) that could be produced on a discrete piece of forestland over a specific period of time. ECOSEL was developed in a partnership among the School of Forest Resources, Center for Sustainable Forestry at Pack Forest, and the Center for Commercialization and exemplifies our commitment to creating progressive solutions from solid science.
On the international stage, the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences faculty are making sure that rigorous science  is brought to bear on management of our oceans’ fisheries.  For example, SAFS has housed or houses three of the five scientists on the scientific committee advising the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna, which determines catch and allocation of this highly lucrative fishery.  With Japan, Australia, Korea, Taiwan, New Zealand and Indonesia as commission members, and the Philippines, South Africa and the European community as cooperating non-members, science from the College of the Environment informs practice virtually across the globe.

Each day I learn something new about the exceptional research being undertaken across the College of the Environment.  The rate at which we turn our research into practice, serving our communities and our planet, is truly astounding.  As we take time this month to step outside the classroom, office or lab, I hope that we can take a moment to appreciate how truly fortunate we are to share our work in this way.


Lisa Graumlich Signature

Lisa Graumlich
Dean, UW College of the Environment



Calls for Nominations

For complete list of 2012 University of Washington Awards of Excellence, including nomination deadlines, click here.


Awards of ExcellenceOutstanding Public Service Award

Do you know of a faculty or staff member who has made exemplary contributions to the common good through public service? Presented at the University’s annual Recognition Ceremony in June, the Outstanding Public Service Award recognizes faculty and staff efforts to improve the quality of people’s lives locally, nationally or internationally. The basis for the nomination may be social, cultural, civic, education-related, or health-related achievements and may be uncompensated consulting work within one’s area of expertise, or volunteer work in other areas. Nominations are due Friday, January 20, 2012 and may be made by faculty or staff, or by a member of an organization that has benefited from the public service activity. For additional information, click here.


Lifelong Learning Award

Nominations are open for the 2012 UW Distinguished Contributions to Lifelong Learning Award. This annual award honors faculty who have taught or designed courses, seminars or workshops aimed at working adults and other nontraditional students, and who have received excellent teaching evaluations for that work. The award recipient will be granted a $5,000 stipend, and will be honored at the 2012 UW Awards of Excellence Ceremony in June. The nomination deadline is Wednesday, Febraury 15, and anyone is welcome to submit. Click here to learn more.


UW AMS Students Team Up with Q13 FOX News to Produce the 2012 Washington Weather Calendar

Weather CalendarThe University of Washington American Meteorological Society (AMS) Student Chapter collaborated with Q13 FOX News to produce the 2012 Washington Weather Calendar. This chapter serves both a service and educational role by assisting in career days and science fairs for local high school students, sponsoring public lectures, mentoring younger students, and generating general interest in the field of atmospheric science. The students researched and wrote many of the weather articles in this calendar.  The AMS student group will receive a portion of the proceeds from sales of the calendar to fund both educational and outreach activities related to weather and science in the Seattle area. The calendar is available at the UW Bookstore and online.


UW Zimride Program

ZimrideTraveling for the holidays? Working with UW Commuter Serices, UW Zimride program is a student-led initiative that helps facilitate ride-sharing to and from the Seattle campus. UW students, faculty and staff can log on to access an online private network designed to coordinate carpooling and help reduce our campus carbon footprint. Having recently celebrates its 5,000th registered user, the program has saved an estimated 9.1 million pounds of C02 emissions.


Successful Kick-Off of “Conversations on Defining Diversity” Series

Defining Diversity LogoOn Wednesday, November 30, 2011, the College of the Environment presented Teaching and Family Planning, the first in a series of conversations on diversity in CoEnv.  Kate Huntington (Earth and Space Sciences) and David Armstrong (Aquatic and Fishery Sciences) spoke about their experiences as parents and faculty, including challenges and success stories.

Conversations on Defining Diversity will be held quarterly.  Each conversation will focus on a particular aspect of diversity, and will feature our own faculty, staff, and students speaking about their experiences, often from very different points of view.  If you would like to be added to the e-mail contact list for the series, please e-mail


XPRIZE Foundation Video Competition

"As humanity faces an increasing number of challenges, it has become increasingly important to explore the boundaries of our knowledge, and to uncover innovative new ways of thinking about our planet and ourselves." XPRIZE, an educational nonprofit organization, seeks video submissions that explore the meaning of your exploration and how it will help shape the world of tomorrow. Deadline for submissions is April 10, 2012. The grand prize winner will receive $10,000 to spend on a National Geographic expedition of his or her chosing. Additional information, along with a gallery of videos that have already been submitted, can be viewed here.


Dean Graumlich Provides Keynote at GIS Day

Since 1987, the National Geographic Society has sponsored Geography Awareness Week in order to "promote geographic literacy in schools, communities, and organizations, with a focus on the education of children." Held during this week of educational activities, GIS Day provides an "international forum for users of geographic information systems (GIS) technology to demonstrate real-world applications that are making a difference in our society." This year over 80 countries particiated in the event. Dean Graumlich provided the keynote, Visualizing Our Changing World, at the GIS Day event hosted on the UW campus. "Lightning Talks" - engaging and informative presentations that run five minutes or less - from the event can be viewed online here, and feature, among others, College of the Environment members Miles Logsdon (Oceanography), Luke Rogers (Forest Resources), and Jeff Richardson (Forest Resources).





Save the Date

UW Environmental Career Fair 2012

Wednesday, February 15, 2012 from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Location: Mary Gates Hall Commons

The College of the Environment is pleased to present the UW Environmental Career Fair, which will feature employers from the government, nonprofit, and private sectors with full-time, career-level positions and internship opportunities.  Students and recent graduates are invited to explore the variety of opportunities available to environment and natural sciences students, and to meet with employer representatives.  No registration is necessary; just stop by Mary Gates Hall on Wednesday, February 15.

Want to practice your networking and interviewing skills or revise your resume before the fair?  The UW Career Center has resources to assist you in preparing for the UW Environmental Career Fair, grad school applications, job searches, and more.

Are you an employer interested in hosting a table?  Please contact for more information on how to register.


2012 Bevan Series on Sustainable Fisheries

Bevan SeriesThursdays, January 5-March 8, 2012, 4:30 – 5:30 PM

Location: Fishery Sciences Auditorium

The 2012 Bevans Series on Sustainable Fisheries, Frontiers in Fisheries: Where sustainability meets reality, kicks off on Thursday, January 5, 2012 with a presentation on “Claws, causes, climate, and corps: A cavalcade of true crab sagas” by David Armstrong, Director of the UW School of Aquatic & Fishery Sciences. Funding for the Series is generously provided by Tanya Bevan, friends of Don Bevan, the UW School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences, and NOAA's Alaska Fisheries Science Center and Northwest Fisheries Science Center



Click here to view the College's full calendar of events. If you would like to suggest an event for inclusion on the calendar, email



For & About Students

Student Lunches with Dean Graumlich

The College of the Environment’s Dean Lisa Graumlich has started a new twice-quarterly lunch with CoEnv undergraduate and graduate students.  Dean Graumlich is interested in sitting down with students to ask questions, hear ideas and experiences, and help build connections and community across degree programs.  During Autumn Quarter Dean Graumlich met with more than 20 students at two lunches.

Would you like to be part of an upcoming “Student Lunch with Dean”?  Please e-mail your name, major, and year to Michelle Hall, Director of Student and Academic Services in the College of the Environment.


Second “Meet, Greet, Teach” Focuses on Teaching Students the Right Way to Write

On Monday, December 5, faculty, postdocs, graduate students, and staff attended Meet, Greet, Teach: Get it Write! in the Program on the Environment Commons (Wallace Hall).  Panelists Kathy Kohm (Conservation Magazine), Patti Loesche (Psychology), Tom Quinn (Aquatic and Fishery Sciences), and John Webster (English) spoke to their experiences and thoughts on what types of writing students need to learn to succeed in future careers, and best practices in designing, teaching, and implementing specialized writing courses.

Meet, Greet, Teach is held twice quarterly, and offers graduate students and postdoctoral fellows with an interest in interdisciplinary, environmental education a chance to interact with faculty from across campus who are willing to share their enthusiasm and their experience. Attendees have a chance to mix and mingle before settling down to a 30-minute "fast panel."  If you would like to be added to the e-mail contact list for the series, please e-mail


Advice for Graduate Students

What’s the best way to pick a lab? How can you manage a large writing project? How do you work the crowd at a cocktail party with confidence and ease? These topics – and many others – are not necessarily covered in a graduate student’s coursework. But knowing how to manage time, the best way to negotiate a salary and how to turn a dissertation into a book can be invaluable to a successful education and career.

The UW Graduate School offers a series of Mentor Memos — penned by UW faculty and staff — that cover these topics, and much more. The memos often compliment a slate of professional development workshops offered by the Graduate School throughout the year.

Check out the latest Mentor Memo on “Pursuing Interdisciplinary Scientific Research,” written by Dean Lisa Graumlich. This memo responds to graduate students’ requests for advice about navigating graduate studies successfully.


Graduate Fellowship Opportunity

On behalf of the National Park Service, the University of Washington College of the Environment will be accepting applications for the 2012 George Melendez Wright Climate Change Fellowship. Applications are due January 18, 2012. The goals of this student fellowship program are to support new and innovative research relevant to managing climate change impacts in US National Parks, including transboundary issues and comparisons to Mexican or Canadian protected areas. Awards will be made in the range of $5,000 to $20,000 per fellowship for research to be undertaken in calendar years 2012-13. Projects may consist of exploratory research that could lead to a larger project funded by other sources but must result in tangible outcomes that are aimed at informing resource decisions. Applications are encouraged for research in any area relevant to the natural and cultural resources of units of the National Park System. Examples include projects addressing vulnerability and risk assessment; adaptation strategies; public perceptions and values; and impacts to natural resources and cultural resources (e.g., cultural landscapes, archeological, traditional cultural/ethnographic, and historic structures).



News from Advancement


Inaugural Donor/Scholar Celebration

With great success, the College hosted its inaugural College-wide Donor and Scholar Celebration in early November. Scores of CoEnv students joined nearly 100 of the College’s most generous donors for a reception and dinner at the UW Club, affording students and donors alike the opportunity to share with one another their common connections to the College. Donors appreciated the chance to hear about students’ studies and accomplishments, and all guests gained a greater insight into what drives many donors to focus their charitable giving towards student support. The night featured welcoming remarks by Dean Lisa Graumlich, a “Donor’s Perspective” presented by master of ceremonies and Forest Resource’s alumnus Tom Friberg, and a student panel including Audrey Djunaedi (Oceanography and SAFS), Laurel James (Forest Resources) and George Roth (Oceanography). With a sold-out crowd for this year’s event, we look forward to another engaging and even more successful evening next year.


Recent Gifts

The College's many alumni, friends, and partners continue to provide significant and much appreciated private support benefiting our faculty and students. Read on to learn about recent commitments:


$2 Million grant for earthquake early warning system from Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

As mentioned in the Dean’s letter above, we are pleased to announce that the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has committed $2 million to the College’s Department of Earth & Space Sciences for the development of a critically important earthquake early warning (EEW) system. The College is part of a highly collaborative, three-university consortium ---- UW, UC-Berkeley and Caltech --- which together with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), is actively pursuing a full West Coast EEW system. John Vidale and Paul Bodin, UW researchers and faculty associated with the UW-operated Pacific Northwest Seismograph Network, and CoEnv Advancement staff worked seamlessly to secure these funds. This latest grant is testimonial to the cutting-edge work undertaken in the College that has benefited from critical support from the Moore Foundation, totaling more than $26 million to date. Click here to read more on the grant, as writen in UW Today.


Program on the Environment Endowed Scholarship meets its $50,000 goal

In her remarks during the Donor and Scholar Celebration (see above), Dean Lisa Graumlich shared that the College was just shy of declaring victory in the Program on the Environment’s (PoE) matching gift effort to create a program-wide Endowed Scholarship Fund. Her remarks did not go unheard, and we are pleased to announce that a generous gift from Celebration dinner guest and CoEnv supporter Katherine Mindlin Reinleitner has put us “over the top”.  Katherine joins several dozen other donors whose thoughtful giving has made this endowment possible, which will make awards to future PoE students who pursue a highly interdisciplinary education and typically go on to pursue careers in natural resource conservation, policy, planning, and environmental education. A friend of the College since its founding in 2008, Katherine and husband Lee have been tireless volunteers and donors, underwriting a series of Mindlin Lectures in the Department of Earth and Space Sciences. We salute Katherine, Lee and our many other supporters for helping to successfully secure the pathway to launch this endowment.

Earth and Space Sciences receives $40,000 for student support

Joseph Vance, Emeritus Professor of Earth and Space Sciences, and his wife, Sara Throckmorton, have made a generous gift of $40,000 to the Department of Earth and Space Sciences, to benefit the Joseph A. Vance Endowed Student Support Fund. We are deeply grateful to Professor Vance and Ms. Throckmorton for their continued generosity, which will provide funding to enrich the ESS undergraduate experience by enabling summer fieldwork, travel to field sites, and other student-led research. 



Career Services

Opportunity: UW Postdoctoral Research Associate in Oceanography

JISAO_logoThe Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO) at the University of Washington is currently seeking applications for a postdoctoral position in physical oceanography. The focus of this research is to carry out numerical ocean model forecasts in support of a program aimed at making seasonal forecasts for the marine ecosystem of the Pacific Northwest coast. The selected candidate will work with Dr. Nicholas Bond and Dr. Albert Hermann, research scientists at JISAO, and Dr. Isaac Kaplan of NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center. The position provides an opportunity to work on a relatively new topic: prediction of the marine ecosystem’s response to climate forcing on time horizons of 6-9 months. Click here for the full position description.


Opportunity: Assistant to the Associate Deans, UW College of the Environment

The Assistant provides executive assistant and administrative support to the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Diversity and the Associate Dean of Research in the College of the Environment, functioning in a fast paced, dynamic, deadline driven environment and drawing heavily on project and personnel management skills, problem solving abilities, initiative, priority setting, juggling multiple projects, and exercising good judgment. The Assistant is a central resource for information about academic affairs, research programs and opportunities, and diversity within the College of the Environment and supports special projects, as needed, by the Dean’s Office senior staff. Click here for the full position description. 


To view additional opportunities, visit the College's Careers Blog (including job postings, internships, and volunteer positions). Subscription includes an RSS feed or an option to receive daily emails batched in a digest. To suggest CoEnv Careers Blog postings, please send position descriptions or opportunity announcements to



Private Funding Opportunities

Please contact Chris Thompson, CoEnv’s Associate Director for Corporate and Foundation Relations, for more information about any of the opportunities below, at 206-221-6372 or


National Fish and Wildlife Foundation: Bring Back the Natives

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation is requesting proposals to restore, protect, and enhance native populations of sensitive or listed fish species, especially on lands on or adjacent to federal agency lands. The program is funded with Federal funds provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and U.S. Forest Service (USFS). Grants may be awarded using one or more of these sources of funding. Because the two leading factors in native fish species decline are habitat alteration and invasive species, projects that address either or both of these threats are of particular interest. Grant awards generally range in size from $25,000 to $100,000 although grants greater than $100,000 will be considered. Pre-Prosal deadline: January 20, 2012. For more information, click here.


National Forest Foundation Invites Proposals for Wilderness Stewardship Challenge Matching Grant Program

The National Forest Foundation, the nonprofit partner of the U.S. Forest Service, works to engage Americans in community-based and national programs that promote the health and public enjoyment of the National Forest System. In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, the U.S. Forest Service issued a Stewardship Challenge calling for all congressionally designated Forest Service Wilderness Areas in the National Forest System to meet baseline management standards by 2014. For 2012, two types of federal grants are available: (1) requiring a 1:1 non-federal cash match; or (2) requiring a reduced match of 50 percent in non-federal in-kind contributions. Only organizations with an operating budget under $200,000 are eligible to apply for the reduced match grant. The program offers one-year awards of up to $50,000. Deadline: January 24, 2012. For more information, click here.


W.M. Keck Foundation Science & Engineering Research Program

The W.M. Keck Foundation's Science & Engineering Research Program seeks to benefit humanity by supporting high-risk/high-impact projects that are distinctive and novel in their approach to intractable problems, push the edge of their field, or question the prevailing paradigm. Past grants have been awarded to major universities and independent research institutions to support pioneering science and engineering research and the development of promising new technologies. Grant requests may range from $500,000 to $1 million over three years, and projects should focus on emerging areas of research at the forefront of science and engineering, have the potential to lead to breakthrough technologies, and be innovative, distinctive and interdisciplinary. Applications should be submitted by email attachment to:  Matt Orefice, Office of Research. The Provost’s Proposal Review Committee will select one proposal to be submitted as a Phase I application for the Foundation’s May 1, 2012, submission deadline. Please copy Bruce Nelson, Associate Dean for Research, and Chris Thompson, Associate Director for Foundation Relations, when you submit your application to the Office of Research.Internal deadline: February 2, 2012.


Royal Bank of Canada Invites Blue Water Project Leadership Grant Applications for Watershed Protection and Safe Drinking Water Projects

The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Blue Water Project is a ten-year, $50 million philanthropic commitment to support organizations that are committed to watershed protection and access to clean drinking water. Project Leadership Grants ranging from $25,000 to $500,000 are available for projects in any of the regions in which RBC has branches, including Canada, the United States, the Caribbean, and the British Isles. Watershed protection programs and projects should focus on the protection and restoration of sensitive natural areas, community-based watershed stewardship, sustainable water use and conservation, or watershed awareness. Drinking water programs and projects should focus on making sure communities have access to clean, safe drinking water, when and where it is needed. Deadline: February 3, 2012. For more information, click here.


National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Invites Applications for Five Star Restoration Grant Program

The Five Star Restoration Program provides modest financial assistance to support community-based wetland, riparian, and coastal habitat restoration projects that build diverse partnerships and foster local natural resource stewardship through education, outreach, and training activities. The National Association of Counties, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and the Wildlife Habitat Council, in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Southern Company, and FedEx, are accepting applications for Five Star. To be eligible for funding, projects must include on-the-ground wetland, riparian, in stream, and/ or coastal habitat restoration; integrate meaningful environmental education into the restoration project either through community outreach, participation, and/or integration with K-12 environmental curriculum; and result in measurable ecological, educational, and community benefits. Grants will vary in amount, but one-year projects will be eligible for $10,000-25,000. Deadline: February 15, 2012. For more information, click here.




The European Geosciences Union (EGU) 2012 Louis Agassiz Medal has been awarded to Ian Joughin (Applied Physics Lab/Earth and Space Sciences). This medal was established in 2005 by the Division on Cryospheric Sciences of EGU in recognition of the scientific achievements of Louis Agassiz. It is reserved for individuals in recognition of their outstanding scientific contribution to the study of the cryosphere on Earth or elsewhere in the solar system. The medal is awarded to Ian Joughin for outstanding contributions to the study of the dynamics and mass balance of polar ice sheets using differential SAR interferometry and other techniques that he has helped to pioneer.


Peter Rhines (Oceanography) has been named a 2001-12 Fulbright Scholar. The focus of his Fulbright work is on climate change and ocean dynamics in the Southeast Pacific and he is at the University of Concepcion, Concepcion, Chile, from September 2011 to January 2012.


An episode of JISAO's "Science in 180" video series was selected to be featured at this year's American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco. The episode, titled Undersea Volcanos: West Mata Eruption, was one of ten videos chosen to be critiqued by a panel of three Hollywood filmmakers during "The S Factor" workshop on December 6. 2011. Congratulations to JISAO's Education/Outreach and Communications Specialist Jed Thompson, who produced Undersea Volcano, and to JISAO scientist Joe Resing, whose work is featured in the video.


Congratulations to School of Oceanography Director Ginger Armbrust, who was recently named a new Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Dr. Armbrust was named Fellow for innovative and fundamental applications of molecular approaches to address the roles of phytoplankton in marine ecosystems. She joins eight other UW-affiliated researchers bestowed with the honor by their peers. Click here to read more.




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