National Postdoc Appreciation Week was celebrated at academic institutions across the U.S. last week. For Ento postdocs, faculty and grad students events included a dept coffee-and-snacks get together and participation in the UMD Postdoctoral Research Symposium where postdocs across campus presented their research. At the symposium two members of our Department were highlighted for their contribution as postdoc researchers and mentors.
Congratulations to Profs Anahí Espíndola and Macarena Farcuh for being named Runners Up for The Entomological Society of America's Science Communication Award. ESA recognized the pair for their increasingly popular blog, Extension en Espanol.
From ESA's press release: The blog has published more than 100 posts since its creation, offering varied expert information that is inclusive, culturally relevant, accessible, and understandable to its target population. The blog currently reaches more than 9,000 monthly readers and has become a prime extension resource in Spanish for the state and beyond.
Help spread the word about your colleagues award and blog by sharing with your networks on social ( X and facebook) and other platforms.
It is with great enthusiasm we share that Todd Waters has received the University System of Maryland Board of Regents’ Staff Award for his “Extraordinary Public Service to the University & Greater Community.”
Todd has been a leader in implementing the educational and land grant mission of our university, using insects to educate students and the public about STEM. Since 2017, Todd has maintained a blistering pace with the Insect Zoo. The zoo has been featured in approx. 100 events, reaching approx. 10,000 people. In this short time, he has had an immensely positive influence on learners from across academic environments. At UMD, Todd has been instrumental in: the Insect Petting Zoo at Maryland Day, an event that President Pines and UMD’s First Lady eagerly wait alongside community members for their chance to hold an insect; Entomology minor recruitment events on Hornbake Plaza where Todd talks up insects’ impacts on our environment; and classroom visits where Todd and Entomology professors introduce undergrads to the incredible diversity of arthropods. A few examples of the type of impact Todd’s Outreach work has had include: a classroom discussion with a Montgomery College Biology Class about insects as models across interdisciplinary studies; a presentation at Rockview Elementary School on insect anatomy and metamorphosis; and an exhibit in St. Mary's County where attendees learned about the Arizona blonde tarantula, among other fascinating arthropods.
Join us in congratulating Todd on this well-deserved recognition!
Congratulations to Dr. Tammatha O'Brien, Principal Lecturer & Director of The Master of Professional Studies in Applied Entomology Program, for being named among UMD's Women of Influence. Tammatha is an outstanding lecturer who consistently and meaningfully supports women minorities in our community both inside and outside of the classroom. Fellow faculty member Louisa Wu says, “She cares very much about students and her colleagues, and she strongly promotes DEI and civil rights work in her teaching and campus service. I am inspired by all that she does.”
The Department of Entomology is pleased to announce Katy Evans and Arielle Arsenault-Benoit as the recipients of the first Charles F. Reichelderfer Memorial Mentorship Award for their outstanding impact on the professional development of their mentees. Each awardee made positive impacts on the academic ambitions of several people, but the mentorship of each was especially notable for inspiring an undergraduate student to pursue graduate work in Entomology. In fact, both mentees have now been accepted into a graduate program. We also recognize the positive impacts of two additional nominees with an Honorable Mention. Anthony Nearman and Maria Cramer provided much-valued and appreciated guidance to undergraduate and junior graduate students. We thank Katy, Arielle, Anthony and Maria for setting an important example in building a supportive professional community in our department.
Congratulations to the Fritz lab for their award winning posters at the Mid-Atlantic Mosquito Control Association (MAMCA) annual conference. UMD-SOARE student Sommer Stephens placed first, for her award winning poster, "Allele frequencies of Culex pipiens bioforms vary across an urban to rural gradient." When not messquitoing around in the Fritz lab for the summer, Sommer is a student at NC State majoring in Animal Sciences. Sommer's proud UMD mentor, Arielle Arsenault-Benoit, also placed in the poster competition with her work, "Spatiotemporal organization of cryptic North American Culex species along an urbanization gradient in greater Washington, D.C."
Link to MAMCA announcement: https://mosquito-va.org/scc-poster-competition
Congratulations to Dr. Margaret Palmer for being awarded Honorary Membership at the British Ecological Society. This award recognizes Margaret's exceptional contribution at the international level to the generation, communication and promotion of ecological knowledge and solutions. See BES's press release here>>
Please join us in congratulating Dr. Karen Rane, Director of UMD’s Plant Diagnostic Lab, for being named recipient of the National Plant Diagnostic Network’s (NPDN) Lifetime Achievement Award.
Quote from NPDN announcement:
“Since the beginning, NPDN has benefited from Rane’s practical experience and advice, whether it was in developing training tools, setting priorities or mentoring new diagnosticians.”
Read the networks full press release here: https://www.nifa.usda.gov/about-nifa/blogs/national-plant-diagnostic-network-recognizes-outstanding-service-lifetim
We are very pleased to announce that the winner of the CMNS Board of Visitors Junior Faculty Award is Entomology's Assistant Professor, Karin Burghardt! Karin’s work focuses on human-mediated impacts on plant and insect community interactions and populations. In addition to carrying out this research Karin is a highly engaged university citizen. She teaches undergraduate level courses, serves on a number of committees and shares her knowledge about sustainable practices with the general public.
Please join us in congratulating Karin on this well deserved recognition. & FYI, Karin will be presenting at Science on Tap Monday, May 2, so swing by her talk if you are able. A great opportunity to congratulate her in person and learn more about her work.
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The Entomological Society of America's Eastern Branch Early Career Award recognizes early professionals who have made outstanding contributions to entomology, shown commitment to extension or outreach, and excelled in entomological education. Congratulations to Dr. Karin Burghardt, the recipient of this year's award!
Dr. Karin Burghardt is an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist in the Department of Entomology at the University of Maryland College Park. Trained as a community ecologist, she specializes in understanding plant-insect interactions in human-modified landscapes ranging from suburban yards to abandoned agricultural fields to managed forests. Her research and extension program helps determine best practices for how humans can share space with a variety of flora and fauna.
In April, Karin will be honored at the Eastern Branch Meeting in Philadelphia and entered for consideration for the Society–level award given at ESA's Annual Meeting. Congratulations again on the well-deserved recognition Dr. Burghardt!
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Big round of applause to the 11 undergrad minors and researchers who made it on the Fall 2021 CMNS Dean's List! Congrats Sejal Sinha, Jenan El-Hifnawi, Aaron Chan, Sankara Ganesh, Jane Quackenbush, Helen Craig, Shane Windsor, Colette Lord, Matthew Nikzad, Jenica Liu and Arthur Young on completing your classes with flying colors !
(& apologies if we missed anyone)
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Congratulations to Dr. Leslie Pick for being named a 2021 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Dr. Pick is being recognized for her “distinguished contributions to the fields of evolutionary developmental biology (evo devo) and insect biology, particularly the role of Hox genes in embryogenesis and organismal diversification.”
In February, Leslie will be awarded at the AAAS Annual Meeting. Congratulations again on the well-deserved recognition Dr. Pick!
See full CMNS press release here>>
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Congratulations to Dr. Dan Gruner, recipient of the Entomological Society of America's Eastern Branch, Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching! Dr. Gruner has a long teaching career with undergraduate courses in the Biological Sciences Program, graduate classes in Entomology, and mentoring student researchers. Currently he teaches “Principles of Ecology,” where he incorporates ecology-related projects that highlight environmental issues, encouraging students to document current events and work with real world data. In 2021 this course was praised by students and the college alike for offering “A Hole New Perspective on Brood X.”
In April, Dan will be honored at the Eastern Branch Meeting in Philadelphia and entered for consideration for the Society–level award given at ESA's Annual Meeting. Congratulations again on the well-deserved recognition Dr. Gruner!
The Entomological Society of America's Plant-Insect Ecosystems Lifetime Achievement Award in Entomology goes to Professor Emeritus Galen Dively. Awarded to Galen for his LEGENDARY career as an entomologist, his contributions to the advancement & promotion of the field, and for his inspiration and mentorship to others. Galen will be presented with this award along with an ESA Fellows award during the Annual ESA Meeting, October 31 - November 3 in Denver, CO. Please join us in congratulating Galen for another well-deserved honor!!!
ESA announcement released in August 21 P-IE newsletter.
Professor Emeritus Galen Dively has been elected as a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America in recognition of his outstanding contributions to entomology research, teaching and extension. Galen’s research is broadly focused and closely linked to his extension efforts to address IPM issues. Most recently, he developed and directs a multistate sweet corn sentinel monitoring network for tracking field-evolved resistance to the Bt toxins, which has influenced EPA to consider changes to the insect resistance monitoring protocol for Bt crops. Galen will be presented with this award during the Annual ESA Meeting, October 31 - November 3 in Denver, CO. Please join us in congratulating Galen on this well-deserved honor!!!
For more on Galen’s efforts in entomology check out ESA's press release here>>
UMD’s Entomology Games team—known as the Checkerspots—earned second place in the eastern regional competition. With their win, the Checkerspots advanced to the national competition, which will be held at the Entomological Society of America’s (ESA) national meeting in Denver in November.
See CMNS article to learn more about the team and their preparations for the national games.
Congratulations to Associate Professor Dennis vanEngelsdorp for being named Highly Cited Researcher by Clarivate's Web of Science for the 5th year in a row!
See Clarivate's list here>>
Congratulations to Distinguished University Professor Margaret Palmer recipient of the Helmholtz International Fellowship Award for Excellent Researchers. These fellowships are "aimed at outstanding senior scientists who have distinguished themselves through their work in areas relevant to Helmholtz. The prize is awarded in recognition of the scientific merits and is endowed with a total of 20,000 euros." She was recognized for "cutting edge work in hydrology and ecology" and "pioneer work at the interface of science and society." Once COVID-19 travel restrictions are lifted, Margaret will be spending time at the Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research in Leipzig, Germany with the option to collaborate with scientists at other Helmholtz centers.
This spring Maggie Hartman, M.S. student in the Lamp Lab, entered the Campus-Level Three-Minute Thesis competition and won! Maggie says distilling her thesis, ‘Dragons on the farm: A novel approach to determining dragonfly diet in agroecosystems', into a 3-minute video for a public audience was an interesting challenge.
Choose "read more" to find out more about Maggie’s initial interest in the competition, her approached to the task, her initial “shock” to have won and what’s next for her and her competitors.