Brian Kertson to Speak at SEFS Graduation

We are super excited that SEFS alumnus Brian Kertson, a carnivore research scientist with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, will be our keynote speaker at the 2017 SEFS Graduation, Friday, June 2, at 9 a.m. in Kane 130! Brian grew up in Woodinville, Wash., and worked his way up the SEFS ladder for his bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate—all of which helped him land his dream job working with big carnivores in Washington (including the adorable cougar kittens above!). For more on Brian, check out a profile we did of him a few years ago, and we hope you’ll join us as we celebrate this year’s graduates.



Alumni Update: Melissa Pingree

Recent SEFS alumna Melissa Pingree, who defended her dissertation earlier this year and will walk in our graduation ceremony, has already begun a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Idaho with Dr. Leda Kobziar, a fire ecologist in the Department of Natural Resources and Society! Melissa will be working on projects relating fire disturbances to soil heating and repercussions for soil ecological processes.


Tomorrow (5/23): SEFS Year-End Celebration!

We can’t wait for our annual end-of-year party tomorrow, from 3 to 6 p.m. in the Anderson Hall courtyard. We’ll kick things off with our award recognitions and then dive into the catered snacks, beer, wine tasting and Silent Auction. Whether you can come for five minutes or stay the whole time, we look forward to seeing you!


UW Climate Change Video Awards: Join the Show!

We have a terrific show lined up, including Dr. Peter Kareiva as the keynote speaker, Ashley Ahearn as the emcee, and a panel of four distinguished judges to discuss the student films and announce the winners. Register today to join us on Friday, June 2, 7-9 p.m. at Town Hall Seattle!


2017 Urban Forest Symposium: Equity & the Urban Forest

Also happening tomorrow, May 23, is the 9th annual Urban Forest Symposium, which will explore the intersection of social justice and urban forestry. The symposium runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a reception to follow, at the Center for Urban Horticulture. If you have to miss the SEFS Year-End Celebration, let it be for a great event like this!


May 23, 2017:

Urban Forest Symposium, 9-4 p.m, CUH

May 23, 2017:

SEFS Year-End Celebration, 3-6 p.m.

June 2, 2017:

Climate Change Video Awards, 7-9 p.m., Town Hall

June 9, 2017:

SEFS Graduation Celebration, 9-10:30 a.m., Kane Hall 130



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We get to begin once again with some great student kudos, starting with ESRM major Shruti Parikh, who won a competitive internship with the CoMotion Mary Gates Innovation Scholars summer program! Shruti, who is an undergrad researcher in Professor Sharon Doty’s Plant Microbiology Lab, will receive a scholarship to do full-time research in the lab this summer on the project, “Salt Tolerance Promoting Endophytes for Agriculture and Bio-Energy Crops.”

Big-time kudos, as well, to seven of our students who have been awarded scholarships for the 2017-18 academic year from the College of the Environment! The winners include Xin Deng, sophomore ESRM major, who received the Del Rio Endowed Environmental Studies Scholarship, and then six students who received a College of the Environment Scholarship: Daniel Phung, senior BSE major; Rose Denney, senior ESRM major; Bridger Machus, junior ESRM major; Riley Plumb, junior ESRM major; Iona Rohan, sophomore ESRM major; and Eric Anderson, incoming freshman ESRM major. Congratulations, all!

We also have kudos for a bunch of our students who participated at the UW Undergraduate Research Symposium last Friday, May 19. Poster presenters included Allison Erskine, Sam Scharffenberger, Kyona Koo, Hao Liu, Shannon Obrien, Alishia Orloff, Shruti Parikh, Eden Pollock, Ryan Koning, Erin Strand, Alison Wang, Paul Albertine, Sydney Fry, Carolyn Hartman, Evora Glenn, Kyra Kaiser, Aden Kinne, Teodora Rautu and Zoie Tisler (and possibly others—we had scads of talented folks there!). Those giving oral presentations included Olivia Moskowitz, Tristan O'Mara, Megan Schenck and Rachel Yonemura. Awesome work, all of you!

Let’s not forget kudos for SEFS doctoral student Korena Mafune, who presented the latest installment of the Evening Talks at ONRC speaker series on May 19: “Old-growth temperate rainforests in western Washington: Fungal communities in canopy soils as adaptive facilitators to environmental change.”

A final kudos shout-out, too, for SEFS master’s candidate Loretta Rafay (nee Fisher), who has taken on a project to collect stories providing informal advice for students looking to transition to life as a graduate student here! What a wonderful idea, and if you’d like to learn more or get involved, please reach out to Loretta.

Students: A reminder about the new summer course: Intro to Papermaking (BSE 490B), in which Shannon Ewanick will teach you about methods of papermaking (from hand to machine), raw materials (from rags to wood), environmental sustainability (from water and air pollution to energy use and recycling), and you’ll get to make your own paper on the pilot-scale paper machine in Bloedel Hall. The course is offered in the Summer A Term and requires no prerequisites, science or engineering background. Learn more and register today!



The Strategies for Ecology Education, Diversity and Sustainability (SEEDS) Program of the Ecological Society of America is seeking ESA Members to serve as SEEDS Meeting Mentors for undergraduate students during the 2017 ESA Annual Meeting in Portland, Ore., from August 6 to 11. This year, the SEEDS Program will sponsor 50 students from diverse backgrounds with a demonstrated commitment to the SEEDS mission. SEFS alumnus Jorge Ramos (’11, M.S.) has served as one of these mentors; learn how you can get involved!

On May 8, The Daily ran a great story about “The Living Breath” symposium, “Symposium brings together Native voices and stories of indigenous struggle.” SEFS master’s student Jessica Hernandez was one of the main organizers.



The BSE Ecohydrology Faculty Search candidate talks began this morning with Christine Dykstra. Future talks will be held this Friday, May 26, and Tuesday, May 30, both at 10:30 a.m. in the Forest Club Room.

Later this afternoon, the fourth and final candidate in the soils faculty search, Jay Raymond, will be giving a public talk. Jay’s seminar will take place from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in the Forest Club Room.

Then, on Wednesday, May 24, we will welcome Dr. Sara Patterson, a professor in the Department of Horticulture at the University of Wisconsin, as the second candidate in the UW Botanic Gardens Director Search. Sara will give a public seminar in the Forest Club Room from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.: “Cutting Loose: Around the world studying Arabidopsis, grapes and fonio.” The following afternoon, May 25, Sara will give a separate talk from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at CUH about her vision for the UW Botanic Gardens, “Deep Rooted and Reaching Skyward: Cultivating the Past, Present and Future.”



Wildlife Seminar: Mondays, 3:30-4:50 p.m., Kane 130

ESRM 429 Seminar: Tuesdays, 8:30-9:20 a.m., AND 223

SEFS Seminar Series: On hiatus until Autumn 2017



Professor Soo-Hyung Kim is a co-author on a new publication in Weed Research, “Competitive traits of the invasive grass Arundo donax are enhanced by carbon dioxide and nitrogen enrichment.”

SEFS doctoral student Lauren Satterfield is a co-author on a paper in the African Journal of Wildlife Research, “Estimating Occurrence and Detectability of a Carnivore Community in Eastern Botswana using Baited Camera Traps.”



On May 13, Lynda Mapes wrote a sad story in the Seattle Times about a 72-year-old pitch pine in the Arboretum that had succumbed to steadily warming and drier summers, “Farewell, giant pine: Climate change kills a champion at Washington Park Arboretum.” The story features Arborist Clif Edwards and Manager of Horticulture David Zuckerman (and a quick mention of Ryan Garrison).

Also, in a throwback to 2013, SEFS Affiliate Professor Nancy Maryboy was quoted in an article in National Geographic, “Solar Eclipse Myths From Around the World.” The story resurfaced because National Geographic is now going to put together a video about the work.



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