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CEREO Newsletter- 2018 Spring

Message from the Director

As CEREO Director I have enjoyed many diverse opportunities to catalyze important environmental work of interdisciplinary CEREO teams, and to provide professional development opportunities for WSU faculty, staff, and students. Recently the National Science Foundation (NSF) asked me to lead their Division of Environmental Biology (DEB), as Division Director. DEB is the primary source of support in the U.S. for basic biological research on populations, species, communities, and ecosystems. Many WSU researchers will be familiar with core programs under the Division’s umbrella: Ecosystem Science, Evolutionary Processes, Population and Community Ecology, and Systematics and Biodiversity Science. Leading the Division offers not only an exciting opportunity to interact with and support the national community of researchers who rely on all of these programs, but also an exceptional opportunity for professional growth that I can bring back to WSU. The appointment is made via the Intergovernmental Personnel Act, which means that although I will be based at NSF, I remain a Coug (!), maintaining involvement with my research program, and returning to WSU within 1-4 years. In equally exciting news… together, CEREO’s Executive Committee, the Office of Research, and I were able to recruit a new leadership team that will ideally capitalize on CEREO’s accomplishments and momentum. Jan Boll has agreed to be CEREO’s Interim Director with Julie Padowski in a new role as Assistant Director. Jan has strong leadership experience, including building a highly interdisciplinary, cross-college water program at University of Idaho before WSU successfully recruited him in 2015. You’ll find him to be highly collaborative, collegial, and insightful, as well as an exceptionally effective advocate for our community of environmental researchers, educators, and outreach professionals. Julie has been an invaluable asset to WSU’s environmental community since CEREO and WRC together recruited her to work with us in 2014. She manages a variety of CEREO and WRC programs, while also playing a pivotal leadership role in interdisciplinary environmental research such as our Food-Energy-Water collaboration. My NSF appointment begins on 14 May. As Steve and I pack up the car to head East for a time, I feel I can’t adequately express my gratitude to the many people who have championed CEREO over the years, and the many people who have been warmly supportive of my pursuit of this exciting new adventure in Washington D.C. – I will try to make you all proud.

– Stephanie

Research News

CEREO seed grants paying off for WSU researchers

Effects of stormwater pollution on salmon

A recent study by a team of WSU researchers, funded in part through a 2014 CEREO Seed Grant, has found that toxic pollutants not only can be lethal to juvenile and adult salmon, but that those fish who are exposed to these pollutants can develop long-term damage to their sensory systems.  The research was covered by WSU News, and published in Scientific Reports, an open-access journal from the publishers of Nature this past month, and highlights the successful collaboration between co-authors WSU faculty Allison Coffin, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience at WSU Vancouver, and Jen McIntyre, Assistant Professor in the School of the Environment at the WSU Puyallup Research & Extension Center.


Benefits of rethinking prairie land management

Samantha Bussan, student working with Dr. Schultz

Through a unique collaboration between agricultural producers, conservation scientists, economists, sociologists, and agricultural researchers, PI Stephen Bramwell and co-Is Cheryl Schultz, Sarah Hamman, Philip Watson, and Marty Chaney are gearing up to evaluate if and how agricultural productivity can be maintained or enhanced in working landscapes while simultaneously accruing conservation value for native plants and animals. This project, recently funded by the Western Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE) organization, was developed in part through a 2014 CEREO seed grant awarded to co-I Schultz.  Using a combination of field experiments, economic assessments, and surveys, the team hopes to identify opportunities for agricultural producers to increase the conservation value of their properties, while maintaining or even enhancing their bottom line.

Other News

C-NSPIRE Graduate Certificate Program- Accepting Applications through August 1

Recognizing that science and technology researchers cannot solve complex environmental problems alone, the C-NSPIRE interdisciplinary graduate certificate program aims to address the longstanding need for a corps of top-flight scientists capable of communicating the relevance of their work at the science-policy interface.  The primary objective of this certificate is to provide students an interdisciplinary perspective of the science related to the global N- and C-cycles, introduce students to public policy studies, and give them experience communicating their science in the policy realm.

Applications for summer admission are due August 1, 2018 by 11:59pm (PST).  For more information on this certificate program, please visit the website:, or email at

Green Infrastructure Summit

Organized by the WSU Metropolitan Center for Applied Research and Extension and it’s partners, the Green Infrastructure Summit brought together researchers, city and state agencies, and non-governmental organizations to discuss the many challenges of metropolitan areas and how urban green infrastructure can help address urban issues.  Discussions covered conceptual frameworks through to on-the-ground green infrastructure assessments, and covered problems ranging from  storm-water management and urban heat islands, to equitable access to green spaces and social justice.

Recognizing that green Infrastructure elements may be integrated in communities in single, small-scale applications or networks of practices spanning entire watersheds, this Summit sought to:

  • Connect communities and university faculty to share existing resources, inform education and research priorities, and build new collaborative, problem-solving networks.
  • Present research being conducted in the region focusing on successes and challenges for implementing best practices in communities adopting urban/suburban green infrastructure.
  • Build networks among communities and university faculty for future opportunities through City/County-Researcher-Extension partnerships, City/County peer-to-peer networking and University researcher / Extension peer-to-peer engagement.

For those who want to join the PNW Green Infrastructure list-serv to stay up to date on green infrastructure discussions and opportunities, you can subscribe at:

Resilience Assessment Training

On 22-24 March, a group of interdisciplinary faculty, staff, and students from WSU, University of Idaho, and University of Montana gathered at UI for a workshop on “resilience assessment” led by Paul Ryan, who has been a leader in developing the practice of resilience assessment with the Resilience Alliance.  A key takeaway from the workshop is that quality of the social process in environmental problem solving is key to success. The workshop underlined the need for continued commitment to integrating human dimensions and high-quality engagement in environmental research, education, and outreach – scientists and engineers may design beautiful solutions but ultimately it is human beings who will implement solutions.

Software Carpentry in Python Workshop (Feb 28-Mar 1)

The Center for Environmental Research, Education and Outreach (CEREO) and the Center for Institutional Research Computing (CIRC) hosted a Software Carpentry workshop this past March. The two-day workshop focused on skills for computationally-intensive research.  Live exercises and tutorials introduced a variety of topics including programming in Python, version control with Git, and working with the unix shell. The beauty of these workshops is that no prior programming experience is needed! Check the CEREO website for details on future Software Carpentry dates.



General Opportunities

Prepare Grant Budgets That Secure Your Research Funding

In many instances, your budget is the first thing reviewers jump to before digging into your full application. They are looking for a comprehensive, bulletproof picture of your research through your budget. That’s where grant writing expert, Diane H. Leonard, GPC, can help. During her upcoming 60 minute online training, she’ll walk you through each step of creating a budget. You’ll receive numerous budget form examples, and learn how they can help you more successfully tell your project’s story (including both single and multi-year grants for federal, state, and foundation funding). By implementing the proven strategies you’ll receive during this training, you’ll be able to create a winning budget and boost your chances of funding.
Who is the Expert Speaker?      Diane H. Leonard, GPC
When is it?                                   Thursday, May 10th at 1pm ET
Where can I sign up?                  Register HERE

NSF: Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS)

Full Proposal Deadline Date: September 26, 2018.
The overarching goal of the INFEWS program is to catalyze well-integrated, convergent research to transform understanding of the FEW Nexus as integrated social, engineering, physical, and natural systems in order to improve system function and management, address system stress, increase resilience, and ensure sustainability.
For more information and guidelines for submission.
Questions regarding proposal submissions should be directed to INFEWSquestions@NSF.GOV

National Geographic Request for Proposal: Reducing Marine Plastic Pollution

Priority will be given to projects that aim to do one or more of the following:
• Develop innovations to stop plastic from reaching waterways through recycling or other means
• Implement innovative teaching methods that engage students in investigating and creating solutions for problems related to marine plastics
• Focus on geographic gaps in knowledge (e.g., Africa) or on known hotspots contributing most to the marine plastic pollution problem
• Engage new audiences in seeking solutions (e.g., product designers) to the plastic problem
Typical proposal requests should be less than $30,000. Applicants may request up to $100,000, of which up to 20 percent of the total can be used as a stipend for the applicant or team members (please see the Preparing Your Proposal page regarding stipend eligibility and other budgetary guidance). Projects may be focused around conservation, education, research, storytelling, or technology, and all applications should explicitly review what has already been accomplished and state the plan for evaluating the impact of the work.
For more information and to apply. The current grant cycle closes July 10, 2018.

Interest in learning more about the Columbia River Treaty? Here are a few opportunities

Pre – Canadian Water Resources Association Meeting May 28 – pre-meeting focused on the Columbia River Treaty. As of right now both the lead negotiator for US and for Canada will be on the opening panel with Barbara Cosens (UI)moderating.
This will be held the day before the commencement of the CWRA annual meeting in Victoria BC. CWRA and the POLIS group from UVic will host the 1 day conference on the Columbia River Treaty.
Pacific NorthWest Economic Region July 22-26 with a Columbia River Treaty field trip to follow
This is a gathering of state and provincial legislators (and generally also the public university presidents) from the Pacific Northwest of the US and Canada, and covers a broad array of issues. The 26th – 27th will be a study tour focused on the Columbia River Treaty.

ROSES 2018: Physical Oceanography

Closing Deadline: 29 Jun 2018
The primary scientific thrust for physical oceanography at NASA is toward understanding the ocean’s role in climate variability and its prediction. Since the general ocean circulation plays a critical role in the global heat balance and materially changes atmospheric properties through air-sea exchange, understanding and modeling the state of the coupled ocean-atmosphere system are fundamental to climate studies. NASA utilizes the unique vantage point of space to enable rapid collection of global ocean data sets and intends to contribute significantly to the World Climate Research Program’s Climate Variability and Predictability (CLIVAR) Program (!{78EFB6F9-B943-22D1-CA1E-576473D3E354}&path=open

ROSES 2018: Atmospheric Composition: Modeling and Analysis

Closing Deadline: 24 Aug 2018
coupled effects of changes in ozone depleting substance emissions and climate variations on ozone recovery and future atmospheric composition; enabling more accurate climate forecasts based on improved understanding of the forcings of global environmental change; and developing and refining better air quality forecasts that take into account the feedbacks between regional air quality and global climate variations. Achievements in these areas via advances in observations, data assimilation, and modeling enable improved descriptions and predictions of how changes in atmospheric composition affect ozone, climate, and air quality.!{E81E419F-870E-F33B-BD1E-9D1C4AC3430C}&path=open

ROSES 2018: Earth Science Applications: Water Resources

Closing Deadline: 17 Aug 2018
Within the NASA Earth Science Division, the Applied Sciences Program solicits proposals that develop and demonstrate the integration of NASA Earth science data and models into water resource management applications and decision support tools that can be sustained by operational partners or stakeholders. Remote sensing data, in combination with hydrologic models, can provide important information to assist water resource managers working with a wide range of partners and stakeholders. In order to make the best decisions possible and develop strategies that enhance the security and sustainability of water supplies, water resource managers and their stakeholders need timely information on water quality, supply, and demand.!{BE264B80-D499-0B71-8257-7E602C370A97}&path=open

Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) – New Frontiers Data Analysis Program

Closing Deadline: 23 Aug 2018
The objective of the New Frontiers Data Analysis Program (NFDAP) is to enhance the scientific return from New Frontiers missions by broadening scientific participation in the analysis and interpretation of data returned by these missions. Other mission and non-mission data sets may be used to supplement these data in a supporting role, but all proposals require the use of data from at least one New Frontiers mission.
This program solicits research proposals to conduct scientific investigations utilizing or enhancing the utilization of data obtained by the New Frontiers missions. For the purposes of this solicitation, “data” is understood to include both uncalibrated and calibrated data as well as higher-order data products produced from the mission.!{E8105664-4EB8-70E8-FEFB-A23972670A58}&path=open

Call for applicants for Scientist Sentinels: Civic Engagement & Leadership Program, May 2018!

Over the past year, we have been inspired by the way scientists have used their voices to affirm the role of science in society and contribute to making the world a better place. Now, we are pleased to announce a new program designed to help scientists and researchers take their engagement to the next level.
Apply to Scientist Sentinels: Civic Engagement & Leadership Program.
Successful applicants are expected to attend the three-day retreat May 29 – June 1, 2018 in Seattle, Washington. Additional questions? Contact
To apply.

Faculty Opportunities

Are you interested in Being a WSU Delegate for the Universities Council on Water Resources?

WSU is an institutional member of the Universities Council on Water Resources (UCOWR), which is a great organization that focuses on connecting academic water researchers, educators, and others for sharing expertise, building leadership, and developing partnerships for addressing water resource issues of today. If you are not familiar with the organization, check it out at
As an institutional member, WSU is entitled to a contingent of Delegates to represent WSU in UCOWR, and we are looking for delegates!
This year’s conference is June 26-28 in Pittsburgh, PA. You can see information about this conference as well as past and future conferences at
If you would like to become involved — or more involved — in UCOWR, consider being a WSU Delegate. To inquire, contact Jonathan Yoder (Director of the State of Washington Water Resources and Lead WSU Delegate to UCOWR) at or 509-335-8596.

Student Opportunities

SISE Summer Institute on Sustainability & Energy

August 9-12, 2018, Chicago IL.
The Summer Institute on Sustainability and Energy (SISE) is a two-week “boot camp” for future decision makers ready to join the sustainability and energy revolution. Held annually since 2011 at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), the program boasts over 300 alumni located around the globe. During weekdays, SISE Fellows (also called “SISE’ers”) interact with area experts in high-level talks, visit fascinating sustainability and energy related sites, and network with a range of professionals and alumni of the program. During evenings and weekends, they work collaboratively on research projects and explore Chicago.
Deadline: June 15, 2018 5:00PM (PST)
For more information and to apply

Assorted opportunities for students to learn more about science-policy interactions.

AGU’s Science Policy Twitter account – they list Hill outreach opportunities pretty often, including this one.
• AGI geopolicy also has an active Twitter account with helpful posts.
• AGU’s science policy internship:
• AGI’s sci policy internship:
• GSA regional chapters fly students in for GeoCVD (geosciences congressional visits day) in September each year. These fly-ins happen right before the USGS Coalition reception, which is a fun event, too.

EcoFS2018: Amazing Summer, 3-credit, Field Science Courses with Ecosystem Field Studies

An opportunity to apply your classroom & textbook learning while immersed in a spectacular & transformative educational setting!
Caribbean Ecosystem Field Studies
* Study, snorkel & SCUBA dive on the Caribbean coral reef of Mexico * June 7-27
Colorado Ecosystem Field Studies
* Study, camp, & hike in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado * July 25 – August 14
For all course information visit the website:
Open to students from all universities & majors, accredited by the University of Montana, Environmental Studies Program

Biology 593: Science Communication

WSU All Campuses, 1 credit seminar course. Instructor: Dr. Coffin.  Offered Wednesday 4:10-5PM.
Topic: Science Communications. Written and oral scientific and technical communication for a variety of audiences. The course will use active exercises, brief presentations, and interactive assignments to emphasize communication skill development in a fun and supportive environment.

Environmental Science 404: Water Resource Governance and Adaptation in the Tropical Andes

University of Idaho summer 2018 course
Explore the connection between disappearing ice caps and water resource management in the Peruvian Andes. Outstanding setting for the study of Andean mountain geography and the impacts of climate variability and change on tropical glaciers, ecosystems, and human populations.
Contact: with any questions.
Apply Here!

Ecosystem Ecology and Global Change will be offered next fall as Biology 469 [M] and 569

The course will integrate biotic interactions and abiotic processes with studies of paleoclimate and future climate change to understand the distribution and function of major landscape units. Emphasis will be on biodiversity and ecosystem function, reconstruction of paleoclimate and past species distribution, and models that attempt to predict climate change and future species. Topics covered in the course the structure of ecosystems, energy flow and nutrient availability, biodiversity, the role of natural disturbance, all in the context of current global change.
ASLO Science Communication Internship
Applications must be received by midnight EST, May 25, 2018.
Timing and Stipend. The internship will begin in September or October 2018. We are accepting applications for both a 12-week internship and a 24-week internship. The stipend is $6,000 for the 12-week period; $12,000 for the 24-week period. Be sure to state in your application which (either or both) of the timeframes you are applying for.
Travel Funds. The intern will be assisting with the organization of events for the 2019 Aquatic Sciences Meeting to be held February 24 – Mar 1, 2019 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. While the conference takes place after the conclusion of the 12-week internship, travel funds for the intern to attend the conference will be available.
For more information and to apply.


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