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Tuesday, July 2, 2019

HERS students prepare to present research at UCAR

2019 HERS Post It Poster session. 
Photo provided by Katrina McClure
    At the beginning of the 2019 Haskell Environmental Research Studies (HERS) Program, students were asked to select a research topic. Some students selected topics that were of particular interest to their tribal communities and others chose topics of personal interest. Topics included both the social and environmental sciences. During, the first weeks of the program, students worked with mentors in classrooms and laboratories at Haskell Indian Nations University, The University of Kansas, and in the field to study climate change and to develop an independent research project.
     On June 21, 2019, the students presented their research at the HERS 'Post It' Poster Session held at Haskell Indian Nations University. This session was designed to allow HERS students to display their posters and practice presenting their research to invited guests. The guests, in turn, provided constructive feedback and suggestions on "post its" they attached to the interns' posters. Faculty from Haskell Indian Nations University and the Kansas NSF EPSCoR RII Track-1 Award OIA-1656006 Microbiomes of Aquatic, Plant and Soil Systems (MAPS) project were invited to attend.
HERS students revising their work with Dr. Brian Lagotte
     Following the poster session practice, students continued to work with Assistant Teaching Professor, Brian Lagotte of the Center for Global and International Studies at the University of Kansas, to revise their written research reports. Students will use the feedback they received at the Post-it Poster Session and from their work with Dr. Lagotte in their final draft of their research papers and posters. The HERS students will present their research project and poster while visiting the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) in Boulder CO next week (July 8-12, 2019). While at UCAR, the HERS students will also participate in special programming planned specifically for them. After they complete their summer HERS internship, the students will have additional opportunities to present their work at other professional meetings, workshops, and symposia around the country, such as the Society for Advancing Chicanos & Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) and the 2020 MAPS Symposium.

The HERS Institute is an 8-week paid summer internship program for undergraduate or recent graduate students held in June and July. The institute's underlying mission is to provide an opportunity for students to work with faculty from Native American colleges who are conducting long-term and short-term research relating to key problems on American Indian lands with the intent to disseminate the information through programs and various forms of media to American Indian peoples. The program is also dedicated to preparing tribal college students for science and technical careers and/or graduate school experiences. 

Workforce Development, Education and Outreach funding for the HERS program is provided by the Kansas NSF EPSCoR RII Track-1 Award OIA-1656006 titled: Microbiomes of Aquatic, Plant, and Soil Systems across Kansas. The award's workforce development and educational objectives are designed to enhance STEM education in Kansas by supporting activities that will lead to an expanded STEM workforce or prepare a new generation for STEM careers in the areas of aquatic, plant and soil microbiome environments and ecological systems.