Two graduate students in the Department of Geography and the Environment received Summer 2012 Research Grants from the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies (LILAS). Ph.D. student Josh Rudow received a grant for preliminary dissertation research in Peru. He will investigate how small- to medium-sized farmers are adapting to the effects of climate change, including unpredictable weather conditions and loss of glacier melt. Master’s student Katherine Lininger also received a grant to conduct research on floodplain processes on the Araguaia River in the Brazilian Cerrado.
Two Texas Geography grads received the Graduate Research Fellowship Program awards from the National Science Foundation, securing two of the only twelve awards for Social Sciences in Geography. Only one other school received two of the NSF awards, ranking Texas among the top in the nation. One award winner, Katherine Lininger, is a first year Master’s student studying who received her undergraduate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and will be working over the summer on river system hydrology in Brazil. Thomas Brandt, the second award winner, completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Texas-Austin, and will be beginning the Master’s program in the Fall. His research will focus on the dynamics of fire, land management, and climate change and their effects on plant biomass quantities in the Botswana Kalahari.
The Department of Geography and the Environment announced the 2012 departmental awards, three of which are awarded to graduate students. Niti Mishra received the Achievement Award for excellence in research, publication, and institution building. Jon Gehrig received the Leadership Award for leadership in departmental activities, and Sharon Adams was given the Teaching Award for teaching excellence, based on student evaluations and faculty recommendations. Vince Clause, who will be a geography graduate student in the fall of 2012, received the Undergraduate Award, which is given to a major in the department who excels through a combination of academic excellence and leadership.
The recipients were chosen by the faculty, and the award winners will receive a monetary award. In addition, their names will be inscribed on the department plaque.