Sea ice and the atmosphere - University of Alaska Fairbanks

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Sea ice and the atmosphere - University of Alaska Fairbanks

College of Natural Science & Mathematics

Vol. 12 Issue 2 Spring 2012

Sea ice and the atmosphere

plus


Notes FROM THE DEAN’S OFFICE

Paul Layer

Dean

Welcome to the Spring 2012 newsletter.

It has been an exciting winter for

us with wild temperature swings and

heavy snowfall in March, but spring is on the

way, and with it the promise of an exciting summer field season

for many of our faculty and students, summer sessions and

our summer programs including the Alaska Summer Research

Academy (ASRA), Girls on Ice and GeoFORCE. I am also looking

forward to commencement, a time to celebrate the accomplishments

of our students. This year CNSM will award 25 PhD

degrees and 30 MS degrees in addition to almost 100 B.A. and

BS degrees. I thank the faculty and students for their commitment

to academic excellence.

Winter has seen the UAF Life Sciences Facility take shape and

become closer to reality. The building was fully enclosed on

Christmas Eve and work continues on the interior. We are scheduled

to move in during the summer of 2013, and teach classes

in the fall. Things are on schedule and looking good.

In this newsletter we highlight some of the achievements of

our faculty, staff and students. For example, David Newman,

Professor of Physics, was elected Fellow of the American

Physical Society in recognition of his distinguished career in his

field. While many of us focus on the summer for our field time,

work continues all year round as evidenced by the research conducted

by Professor of Chemistry William Simpson, featured in

this newsletter. His research studies focus on the impact of sea

ice on the atmosphere.

Of note in this newsletter is the ever increasing list of donors.

Thank you one and all for support of the college and its departments.

The funds have allowed us to endow yet another

scholarship and provide support for student research and travel

to professional conferences to present their work. We are continuing

to seek support for the new Life Sciences Facility and for

instructional equipment for all of our departments. Please feel

free to contact me if you would like to help.

This winter was also a sad one for us as we lost two colleagues;

Davis Sentman, Professor Emeritus of Space Physics, and

Norbert Untersteiner, a former Chapman chair. I recall long conversations

with each of them and will miss them both.

In the last newsletter I mentioned our institutional accreditation

review. We were accredited with very few issues. The process

has allowed us to re-examine our programs, and to update our

curricula. Look for changes in almost all of our majors with the

intent of providing more options for students and to make our

graduates more competitive in their fields after graduation. Also

of note, we are moving forward on creating a collaborative Doctor

of Veterinary Medicine program with Colorado State University.

This program will be a “2+2” program where students will do

the first two years of veterinary school at UAF and the last two

at CSU. This program will offer opportunities for Alaska students

to pursue professional careers in veterinary medicine. There is

still a lot of work to do to make this happen, and I appreciate the

support of everyone involved. •

Office of the Dean

358 Reichardt Building

474-7608

www.uaf.edu/cnsm/

Paul Layer, Dean

John Craven, Associate Dean and

ESTES Director

Hild Peters, Executive Officer and

Interim Development Officer

Pauline Thomas,

Administrative Assistant

Atmospheric Sciences

314 IARC Building

474-7368

www.gi.alaska.edu/AtmosSci/

Nicole Mölders, Chair

Barbara Day,

Office Manager

Biology & Wildlife

211 Irving I Building

474-6294

www.bw.uaf.edu

Christa Mulder, Chair

Jeff Baxter, Office Manager

Chemistry & Biochemistry

194 Reichardt Building

474-5510

www.uaf.edu/chem/

Bill Simpson, Chair

Mist D’June-Gussak, Office Manager

Geology & Geophysics

308 Reichardt Building

474-7565

www.uaf.edu/geology/

Sarah Fowell, Co-chair

Anupma Prakash, Co-chair

June Champlin, Office Manager

Mathematics & Statistics

101 Chapman Building

474-7332

www.dms.uaf.edu

Anthony Rickard, Chair

Kitty Mathers, Office Manager

Physics

102 Reichardt Building

474-7339

www.uaf.edu/physics/

Ataur Chowdhury, Chair

Saundra Jefko, Office Manager

Mission Statement

Through instruction and mentoring,

the College of Natural Science and

Mathematics promotes students’

self-motivation to excel and

guides them towards professional

careers and public service in an

environment of life-long learning.

Through research, the college

advances knowledge of natural,

physical, technological and

numerical systems from a northern

perspective. Instruction, mentoring,

research and outreach are brought

together within undergraduate,

graduate and continuing education

programs to benefit Alaska, the

nation and the world.

Vision Statement

The College of Natural Science

and Mathematics is the education

and research leader in science

and technology for the public and

private sectors of Alaska and the

north. Research and instruction are

strengthened by competitive grants

at the national level, to the benefit

of the university and its students.

Research, teaching, and outreach

contribute to achieve a superior

learning experience. Vitality in

scholarship is improved at all

levels by recruiting and retaining

the best and brightest faculty,

staff, and undergraduate and

graduate students. Instructional

programs use the most current

technologies and methods to

focus on developing skills for both

scholarship and vocation to allow

students to develop to their full

potential and become the scientific

leaders of the future. Leaders

throughout Alaska seek our input

for solutions to problems facing

Alaskans.

2 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


Honor Roll of Donors and Industry Partnerships

We’d like to take this opportunity to publicly thank donors

and industry partners of the College of Natural Science

and Mathematics. Through contributions or hands-on

involvement, they have joined with the college to support our

commitment to academic excellence, research and service.

We hold these relationships with donors and industry partners

in high regard. They lend strength to the college and support our

mission to produce outstanding graduates and a well-qualified

workforce.

We wish to thank the following donors and partners:

BUSINESSES AND AGENCIES

Alaska Trappers

BP Exploration, Inc.

Calvin J Lensink Estate

Eli Lilly and Company

Foundation

Damon and Lana Bender

David and Cheryl Braun

James and Danielle Britt

Robert and Shirley

Cismowski

Burnett and Susan Dunn

Lizabeth Allison and

Michael Levine

Shelby and Leroy Leonard

Paul and Karen Layer

Dorothy Lucas

James Lawless

Rocky Reifenstuhl

and Gail Koepf

Mel Shangin

Richard and Terra Shideler

Steven and Katherine Smith

Melody Schneider

Flint Hills Resources Alaska

New York Life

Preissel Group LLC

The Boeing Company

The Outdoor Foundation

INDIVIDUALS

Kif Augustine-Adams

and Stirling Adams

Layne and Beth Adams

Lauren and Glenn Burnham

Joan and Doug Braddock

Doug Bingham and Sheila

Janki Bingham

Alan Batten

Bill and Andrea Benitz

Linda B. Distad

William Dambeck

Jackie and Ed Debevec

Binhuai Fa

John and Jackie Goering

Ted Gardener

Dennis and Maureen Holden

Sonja and Robert Holden

Deitrie Hanson

Eric Hoberg

Tom and Nancy Hallinan

Marilyn H. Herreid

Woody and Pam Johnson

Brian and Donita Lawhead

Roy Loewenstein and

Alana Stubbs

Nicole Moelders and

Gerhard Kramm

Erik and Melanie Molvar

Joeann and Jim Moran

Dave and Elizabeth McNab

Kristy McCumby

John Nodus

John and Ann Noll

Frank Parr

Sterling Rearden

Bob and Bobbie Ritchie

Tom Royer

William and Carelyn

Reeburgh

Linda Smailus

Rich and Patricia Seifert

Lee and Patricia Snyder

Robin and Mike Smith

Kathleen and Richard Weber

Bob and Terri Watson

Susan S. Woodward

Andrew and Sandra West

Jane and Peter Young

Stephen and Veronica Young

Randy Zarnke

Jerry and Barbara Zelenka

Nathan Zierfuss and

Pamm Hubbard

NEW FACULTY

Jiguo “Jack” Chen, Director of

State Virology Lab and Associate

Professor of Virology

Andrea Ferrante, Assistant

Professor of Immunology

Laura Prugh, Assistant Professor

of Wildlife Biology

Kriya Dunlap, Assistant Professor

of Biochemistry

Sarah Hayes, Assistant Professor

of Chemistry (Analytical)

WELCOME

Laura Conner, Director of CNSM

Outreach and Research Assistant

Professor of Educational Outreach

Nico Leiva, ESTES Purchasing and

Travel Coordinator

Jeff Baxter, Office Manager,

Biology & Wildlife

Lori Gildehaus, ASRA

Administrative Assistant

Kate Pendleton, Public

Information Officer and Recruitment

Coordinator

FAREWELL

John Keller, Professor of

Chemistry, Emeritus

June Champlin, Office Manager,

Geology & Geophysics

Jescia Sigh, ESTES Grant

Coordinator

Dawn Dearinger, Office Manager,

Biology and Wildlife

John Craven, CNSM Associate

Dean

SPRING 2012 3


Studying How Sea Ice Affects the Atmosphere

by William Simpson, Chair, Department of Chemistry

The Arctic sea ice pack is undergoing unprecedented

changes, with unknown impacts on the chemistry of the

Arctic atmosphere. Thus, the NASA-funded BRomine, Ozone,

and Mercury EXperiment (BROMEX) field study, carried out near

Barrow, Alaska in March 2012, aims to improve the understanding

of how various sea ice types affect atmospheric chemistry.

Past studies have shown that salts in sea ice, particularly

sodium chloride and bromide (a trace component of sea salt)

can become converted to potent halogen oxidizers that then

change the fate of many atmospheric compounds. Of particular

concern is the fact that these halogens oxidize mercury, leading

to deposition of toxic mercury to the snowpack increasing its

bioavailability.

Arctic sea ice forms by rapid freezing of sea water that traps

some of the salts in the water in a concentrated “brine”. Thus

“first year” ice, which formed during the prior winter, possesses

a highly saline surface as compared to older “multi-year” ice,

which has experienced a summer melting season. The reduction

in summer sea ice means that the Arctic has more first year ice

in the winter/spring, increasing the salinity of the surface, and

probably increasing the halogen chemistry described above. In

addition to first year ice, the pack ice is in constant motion in

response to winds, currents, and tides that crack its surface

forming “open leads”. In springtime, the leads refreeze, forming

even younger ice types such as nilas and frost flowers. Due to

their high salinity, some have hypothesized that these very young

ice types are the source of the mercury-depositing halogens, but

no experiment has ever been able to test this hypothesis due to

difficulties of working in the “bad neighborhood” of near-coastal

sea ice. The BROMEX field study aims to address this question

of how ice type affects the atmosphere’s chemistry.

BROMEX is a collaborative NASA field mission led by Son V.

Nghiem from the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena,

California. Collaborators come from UAF, the Cold Regions

Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL), Purdue University,

SRI international, Environment Canada, University of Heidelberg,

Steve Walsh stands beside an

IceLander system outside the

Barrow Arctic Research Center

(BARC) north of the town of

Barrow. Photo by Bill Simpson

4 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


Germany, and the University of Washington. The project also has

a large number of international collaborators worldwide. At its

peak, around 30 scientists were in Barrow, Alaska and a roughly

equal number of collaborators, largely satellite remote sensing

experts, were spread across the globe interacting with the

field team. The key design of the experiment was to measure

the state of the sea ice, determining ice type largely by satellite

remote sensing. We then measured on the ground key chemical

species involved in this chemistry, including mercury, ozone, and

halogen gases. These atmospheric chemicals were measured via

an array of instrument packages to determine the horizontal and

vertical structures of the chemicals, which are then compared to

the sea ice types.

To measure the vertical profile of halogens and ozone, Paul

Shepson of Purdue University brought a highly instrumented twinengine

aircraft (a Beechcraft Dutchess) known as the Airborne

Laboratory for Atmospheric Research (ALAR) that flew vertical

profiles and explored the horizontal extent of the chemistry aloft

and inland. The ALAR data will provide unprecedented vertical

profile resolution of the chemistry that will help to determine how

far air mixes from the salt-rich sea ice aloft.

My research group at UAF sought to determine horizontal

structures of halogens and ozone by deploying autonomous

instrument packages known as “IceLanders” onto the sea ice

and allowing them to drift with the ice, reporting data back by

satellite modem communications. Environmental Chemistry

Ph.D candidate Steven Walsh was instrumental in building two

IceLander systems for this project, and Steve and I deployed the

instruments in early March, 2012. Other graduate and undergraduate

students including Peter Peterson, Erin Gleason, and

Eyal Saiet provided key support in the project and participated in

the field experiment.

The IceLander autonomous instrument packages were designed

to be deployed rapidly from a helicopter allowing them to be

placed onto sea ice and then recovered after the studies were

done. The IceLanders are solar powered, maintain a constant

instrumental temperature by using the instruments’ waste heat,

and telemeter data using a two-way Iridium satellite modem

link. In addition to measuring atmospheric chemicals, they also

measure meteorology, GPS position and system health. They

have a webcam that provides images of the sea ice as well as

determining the rotation of the package by using the sun’s position

in the time-stamped image. Hourly real-time data from the

systems is available at /

The initial deployment locations for the IceLanders were chosen

using satellite remote sensing images interpreted by sea ice and

snow experts Drs. Don

Perovich and Matthew

Sturm from CRREL.

We then scouted the

sites using a chartered

helicopter and

placed a GPS marker

beacon from University

of Washington at the

sites. It was then

time to load up the IceLanders and deploy them. This task was

Steve’s and mine, and through rapid teamwork, a great checklist,

and help from our pilot, we installed each IceLander in

under 40 minutes. A time-lapse video of the install of one of the

IceLanders is available at YouTube:

was placed on

pack ice west of Barrow with the intent that it would break free

of the coast and join the drifting Arctic ice pack. IceLander-1 was

placed east of Barrow, on what was hoped to be landfast ice to

provide a reference comparison. A third set of instruments is

located north of Barrow. The design is that the IceLander-1 site

will typically be upwind so air goes from IceLander-1 to Barrow

to IceLander-2. Those same prevailing winds push the pack ice

away from Barrow, meaning that there should be an open lead

between Barrow and IceLander-2. Testing the influence of that

lead and refreezing sea ice on atmospheric chemistry is the goal

of our study.

The deployment of the IceLanders went surprisingly smoothly

due to uncommon winds from the west and low wind speeds.

However, those winds were not able to break the ice on which

IceLander-2 was placed away from the landfast ice. Finally, on

24 March, 2012, the winds shifted to coming from the east and

intensified, breaking open the lead. At that point, IceLander-2

started a long drift westward on its ice floe. As the system

drifted westward, open water and refreezing sea ice separated

the IceLander-2 site and Barrow. The wind typically blows from

Barrow to the IceLander-2 site, allowing us to observe the effect

of those thin ice types in changing air chemical composition

between the two sites. We now need to collect the data and

compare with the satellite remote sensing of ice type to determine

the influence of sea ice on atmospheric chemistry.

In the long run, this work promises to give a sound mechanistic

basis for our understanding of Arctic atmospheric chemistry on

sea ice. That information can then be used to determine how

the changing Arctic ice pack is likely to change the atmosphere’s

chemistry and deposition of mercury to the ecosystem. •

(ABOVE) A webcam image from the IceLander-2 system deployed on pack sea ice

about 40km west of Barrow, Alaska. Photo by IceLander-2.

(LEFT) A Google Earth screen capture shows the drift track of the IceLander-2

system on 24 and 25 Mar 2012 overlaid on a Terra MODIS 250 meter resolution

true-visible image. The IceLander-2 system is on the rectangular block of sea ice

marked with the square. Image courtesy NASA and Google

SPRING 2012 5


The Three Poles: A New Focus for Research, Sustainability

Management, Ethics (and UAF fellowship)

by Falk Huettmann, Associate Professor, Department of Biology and Wildlife, Institute of Arctic Biology

The ‘three poles’ consist of the Arctic,

Antarctic and the Hindu-Kush Himalayas

(HKH); they make for a unique world heritage.

The ‘three pole’ research scheme has

existed since the 1950s, and globalization

favors such views more and more. But it was

with the International Polar Year (IPY 2007/8)

that this scheme of ‘three poles’ received truly

global attention. Although spatially widely placed

apart, the three poles are still united by hosting

the world’s largest reservoir of snow and

ice, and freezing-cold temperatures. Also, the

warming polar deserts and retreating glaciers

make for a common fact that now ties the

three poles together for their survival.

The author was fortunate to be able to spend

time during a sabbatical working on the three

poles (in Alaska, in Arctic Russia, with the

Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) in Tasmania,

with SCAR-MARBIN (Marine Biodiversity

Information Network), with the International Center for Mountain

Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu, and with the Global

Mountain Biodiversity Assessment (GMBA) in Basel for Global

Mountain Data). Based on over 20 international co-authors,

this work resulted in the publication of ‘Protection of the Three

Poles’ published with Springer, Japan. All proceeds of this book

go to the new ‘Protection of the Three Global Poles’ fellowship

housed at UAF.

As already evidenced in the Global Millennium Assessment, a

synthesis from the three poles makes clear that these regions

are in serious trouble. While industrial development and economic

growth keeps pacing forward, poverty of the people as well

as the protection of this globally unique region remain widely

behind. For instance, less than 3% of the marine areas in the

poles carry a real protection status such as Marine Protected

Areas (MPAs); virtually all terrestrial regions lack a well-designed

and performing national park system. The critical notion of ice

and temperature protection is still widely absent. While HKH is

highly populated, even into highest areas (an intense agriculture

and browsing by livestock can be found up to 6000m), the Arctic

is not so densely populated,

and Antarctica lacks settlements

(apart from many

research stations). However,

tourism makes for one of the

biggest growth industries at

all poles. People seek polar

wilderness for pleasure,

and industrial exploitation

is also intense. Many of the

world’s largest mine sites

and offshore oil and gas

reservoirs are found in polar

Falk Huettmann. Photo by Falk Huettmann

regions (but which are regions that are very

expensive to exploit and thus have to rely on

subsidies such as waived clean-up costs). Also

fascinating are the issues of waste (garbage)

as well as food security, fisheries and urbanization.

It becomes clear that the poles are widely

overcommitted already. The three poles affect

virtually all human beings of the world, involve

all major nations (and their religions), and consequently

represent ‘big politics’ and world

security issues, e.g. Antarctic treaty, Arctic shipping and the

Tibet issue for HKH.

Climate change is clearly then THE major scheme for the poles.

While contamination as well as the treelines are well extending

into the poles now, globally needed actions for the protection

of the world’s climate chambers are not progressing sufficiently

to provide us with sustainability, or even with the maintenance

of the status quo. For instance, methane as well as ‘Black

Carbon’ are virtually not regulated by any nation yet, nor is it

even possible (considering that methane is produced by melting

permafrost in remote wetlands and that black carbon production

is closely related to poverty which is on the rise). The Asian

Brown Cloud (ABC) is noticeable on Mount Everest as well as in

Alaska, for instance. Antarctica achieved already its sad fame

for the ozone hole.

Needless to say, a fascinating megafauna and biodiversity is still

located at the three poles: from seabirds (e.g. auks, penguins

and albatross) to walrus, beluga and killer whales to fish, benthos,

polar and brown bears, to pikas, insects and of course,

plants as well as diseases. The adaptation of life to the poles

makes for fascinating studies in evolution and ecology. Some

areas in Antarctica still host a huge and undisturbed sea floor

biodiversity, the riddle of cryptic species is very obvious for this

region, while many anti-cancer drugs are expected in mid-altitude

HKH. The Arctic spider and fungi diversity are stunning features

too. Clearly, polar regions serve mankind in many ways, e.g. as

water towers. And equally important are the ecological services

that the three poles bring for the atmosphere. Only now do we

realize how fragile but relevant the atmosphere is for human

well-being. Climate and environmental ethics clearly matter for

the poles. It is a lost hope

that the three poles can be

maintained in such a climate

driven by unabated development

policies, and with an

increase in human population.

It is here where we

need more research for sustainability

solutions dealing

with healthy poles, a healthy

life and a healthy globe. •

Tourists from the Marina Svetlana, Aurora Expeditions, on an ice floe

near Coulman Island, off Anarctica, 2009. Photo by R.E.Barwick

6 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


Updated Climate Divisions for Alaska

by Uma Bhatt, Associate Professor, Department of

Atmospheric Sciences

The climate of Alaska is quite complex; Alaska encompasses

several climate types, due to its vast size, high latitude

location, proximity to oceans and complex topography.

Presently, Alaska does not have official NOAA climate divisions

and it is important that we do in order to improve our seasonal

climate forecasts. Updated climate divisions are also needed

for regional climate variability research and climate impact studies.

While climate type zones have been established for Alaska

based on seasonal climatologies (long term average temperature),

there has been little attempt to construct climate divisions,

which identify regions with consistently homogeneous climate

variability. In this study, cluster analysis, which groups stations

with similar temporal variability, was applied to monthly average

temperature data from 1979-2008 at a robust set of weather

stations to develop climate divisions for the state. Satellite measured

surface temperature estimates were used to fill in missing

temperature data when possible. Thirteen climate divisions

were identified based on the cluster analysis and subsequently

refined using local expert knowledge (below). Division boundary

lines were drawn encompassing the grouped stations following

major surrounding topographic boundaries. These divisions

include the North Slope, West Coast, and Central, Northeast and

Northwest Interior. Divisions south of the Alaska Range were

Cook Inlet, Bristol Bay, Aleutians, Northeast and Northwest Gulf,

and North, Central, and South Panhandle. Correlations with various

Pacific and arctic climate teleconnection indices showed

numerous significant relationships between seasonal division

average temperature and the Arctic Oscillation, the Pacific

North American Pattern, the North Pacific Index, and the Pacific

Decadal Oscillation. The next step is to better understand the

relationships between climate divisions and the large-scale climate

as well as to obtain official status for these divisions from

NOAA in order to improve seasonal climate forecasts for Alaska.

These climate divisions can be used to aggregate data in studies

of regional Alaska climate that use gridded reanalysis or global

climate model data. GIS shape-files will be made available for

such research. This work is part of the PhD work of Peter Bieniek

in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences and was accepted

for publication recently (Bieniek et al. 2012). This collaborative

study greatly benefitted from the interdisciplinary co-author group

that includes forecasters from the Alaska National Weather

Service. •

Reference: Bieniek, P. A., U.S. Bhatt, R.L. Thoman, H. Angeloff, J. Partain, J.

Papineau, F. Fritsch, E. Holloway, J.E. Walsh, C. Daly, M. Shulski, G. Hufford,

D.F. Hill, S. Calos, and R. Gens, 2012: “Climate divisions for Alaska based on

objective methods,” accepted to J. Applied Meteorology and Climatology.

Climate division boundaries are shown over Alaska topography with the division

names. Black dots indicate the locations of the Alaska stations used in the

cluster analysis. Local expert knowledge from experienced weather forecasters in

Alaska was employed to draw the final lines.

SPRING 2012 7


What’s Happening in ESTES

by John Craven, Associate Dean and Director, ESTES

Faculty and staff research that is supported through external

agencies is organized through the CNSM research office,

ESTES (Engineering Science and Technology Experiment

Station). In the current 2012 fiscal year (as of March 2012), the

ESTES office has assisted with development of 36 new proposals,

for which 32 are completed and submitted, and for which

$10,357,496 has been requested for research and other sponsored

activities (excluding UA Foundation funds). Eight of these

new proposals have already been awarded in FY12 as well as

three originally submitted in FY11 for a total FY12 award amount

to date of $1,786,158. Six FY11 proposals remain under review

for requested funding of $3,321,175. In addition, ESTES has

also provided post-award administrative support for the 60 continuing

and newly awarded grants (including the UA Foundation)

with authorized budgets totaling $9,784,704 from initial awards

and also provided support for travel and procurement activities

by faculty and staff. Considering only the externally sponsored

activities there are 48 active grants and budgets of $7,722,093.

The ESTES policy is to reinvest a part of the recovered overhead

in CNSM; for the 48 active grants this amounts to $170,920

and $31,611 reinvested, respectively, in the individual PIs and

their academic departments. The remainder is used to support

ESTES operations and other activities.

The following PIs received grant awards in FY12:

Ken Severin: MRI: Acquisition/replacement of an Electron

Microscope, NSF.

Erin Pettit: Using Immersion to Teach Fluency in Science:

Girls on Ice Field Program, NSF, Collaborative Research in IPY:

Larissa Supplement NSF, and Collaborative Research: Sonic

Logging the NEEM Corehole, Greenland NSF.

Rainer Newberry: Bedrock Mapping and Analysis, East Moran

Project, Livengood, Alaska, ADNR.

Todd O’Hara: Ice Seal Contaminants ADFG, Alaska Pinnipeds

Contaminants Ecology ADFG, Cooperative Change of Climate

ANTHC.

Jay Ver Hoef: Patterns of Deposition on Heavy Metal-enriched

Dust Along the Red Dog Haul Road and the Effects on Nonvascular

Plant Communities, NPS/CESU.

Richard Boone: IPA Assignment: NSF Program Director for

the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship

(IGERT), NSF.

Advanced Instrumentation Laboratory

receives NSF grant for new electron

microprobe

The National Science Foundation recently awarded just over

$1,000,000 to Ken Severin, Rainer Newberry, Jim Beget,

Jess Larsen, and Elisabeth Nadin for the purchase of

a new electron microprobe to be housed in the Advanced

Instrumentation Laboratory. Including the required matching

funds of 30%, provided by the Vice Chancellor for Research, the

GI, CNSM, and AIL, the total purchase will be about $1.4M.

This instrument provides information about the elemental composition

of a solid sample. It works by focusing a micron sized

electron beam on the sample, and collecting the x-rays produced

from the sample. This can provide quantitative elemental concentrations

of elements from carbon to uranium, typically in the

500 parts per million range (although in some specific cases

detection limits can approach 1 ppm) in areas as small as one

micron across.

The new instrument will replace AIL's 20+ year-old probe which

has been used for studies of everything from concrete to coins

to archaeological artifacts to fish to gold to volcanoes. The old

instrument has provided data that was used in at least 40 MS

and 13 PhD theses. Many faculty and graduate students are

looking forward to the increased reliability, speed, and enhanced

detection capabilities of the new instrument, which should be

fully operational by the summer of 2013. •

IN MEMORIAM

We bid a fond farewell to two great colleagues, Davis

Sentman and Norbert Untersteiner. Our condolences to

their family, friends and colleagues.


Professor of Physics,

Emeritus

An endowed fund is being established in memory of Norbert

Untersteiner, former Chapman Chair, professor and mentor

to many. Donations may be sent to the UA Foundation,

PO Box 755080, Fairbanks, AK 99775 or online at

Please clearly mark the donation

"Untersteiner Fund."

For more information please contact Hild Peters, Executive

Officer and Interim Development Director, UAF College

of Natural Science and Mathematics, 907-474-7941,

hmpeters@alaska.edu.


Former Chapman Chair

8 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


Student Awards and Achievments

CNSM Student Travel Grant Recipients

Lori Bogren, Experimental Biology Conference, San Diego, CA

Samantha McNeith, Western Regional Honors Council Annual Conference, Albuquerque, NM

Jacob Mongrain, American Geophysical Union, San Francisco, CA

Jonathon Newman, Alaska Entomological Society, Anchorage, AK

Catherine Rubin, Western Regional Honors Council Annual Conference, Albuquerque, NM

Eyal Saiet, Chemistry of the Sea Ice and Troposphere Research, Barrow, AK

Jenna Schmidt, Western Regional Honors Council Annual Conference, Albuquerque, NM

Daniel Thompson, Alaska Chapter of the Wildlife Society Annual Conference, Anchorage, AK

Thomas Colby Wright, ExxonMobil Basin Analysis Short Course, Los Angeles, CA

Olaus Murie Caribou Fellowship Recipient

Thomas Edwards, SW Quantum Information and Technology Conference, Albuquerque, NM

Graduate Student Awards

Peter Bienek, Outstanding poster presentation award for: “Large-scale climate controls of Interior Alaska river ice breakup”

at WCRP OSC

Trang T. Tran, American Geophysical Union travel award to attend the AGU annual meeting in San Francisco.

Rick Ladder Jr, travel support to attend the 4th WCRP International Conference on Reanaylses, Silver Spring, Maryland.

Celebrating TeachingExcellence Fall 2011

Student opinion surveys are one measure of teaching excellence.

While high student opinions of a course do not

assure that a course is an excellent course, engaging students

is an important step in the process of learning. At the end

of each semester, an Instructional Assessment System Survey

(IAS), also known as student opinion of instruction, is formally

given to every class in the university system.

As dean, I would like to recognize CNSM faculty, instructors,

adjuncts and lecturers who taught courses highly rated by students

during the last semester.

The criteria for recognition is having received an overall IAS score

of greater than or equal to 4.5 (median of terms 1-4) in a course

with at least eight students responding. A score of 4.5 indicates

that 75% of students rated the course as very good to excellent.

Congratulations to the following on their efforts in teaching

during fall semester 2011. •

BIOLOGY & WILDLIFE

Michael Harris

Knut Kielland

Denise Kind

Todd O’Hara

Link Olson

Barbara Taylor

CHEMISTRY &

BIOCHEMISTRY

Tom Green

Kriya Dunlap

GEOLOGY AND

GEOPHYSICS

Sarah Fowell

Rainer Newberry

Anupma Prakash

MATHEMATICS &

STATISTICS

Ron Barry

Leah Berman

Jill Faudree

John Gimball

Julie McIntyre

John Rhodes

PHYSICS

David Newman

Channon Price

SPRING 2012 9


The 2012 ASHSSS:

Another STEM Success

by Abel Bult-Ito,

Professor of Biology and ASHSSS Director

The 27 th Alaska Statewide High School Science Symposium

(ASHSSS) was held on March 31 and April 1, 2012, at the

University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) in College of Natural

Science and Mathematics (CNSM) facilities and in collaboration

with the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District (FNSBSD).

The ASHSSS is a regional event, with winners going on to participate

in the National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium

(JSHS). The JSHS is administered by the Academy of Applied

Science and is jointly sponsored by the U.S. Departments of the

Army, Navy, and Air Force. These organizations also provide funding

to regional symposia, including the ASHSSS.

The ASHSSS program objectives are those of our parent national

organization, the JSHS:

To promote research and experimentation in science, technology,

engineering, and mathematics (STEM) at the high school level

To recognize the significance of research in human affairs and

the importance of humane and ethical principles in the application

of research results

To search out talented youth and their teachers, recognize

their accomplishments at symposia, and encourage their continued

interest and participation in the sciences, engineering,

and mathematics

To expand the horizons of research-oriented students by

exposing them to opportunities in academic, industrial, and

governmental communities

To increase the number of future adults capable of conducting

research and development.

On Saturday, 22 students competed in four scientific sessions

presenting on research in organismal diversity, physical and

chemical sciences, microbiology and molecular biology, and

organismal biology. The first and second place winners in each

session continued to the finals session on Sunday. The students’

accomplishments were celebrated at an awards banquet

on Saturday night at the Wedgewood Resort.

Here are the winners for 2012:

1 st place: , Factors Influencing Hedonic

Well-Being Across the Lifespan, West Valley High School

2 nd place: The Effect of Triclosan on the

Growth of Common Soil Bacteria, Palmer High School

3 rd place: Survival of Elodea nuttallii:

Competition with Indigenous Species and Exposure to Limiting

Factors, West Valley High School

4 th place: The Effects of Pool Chlorine

on Lung Exertion in Adolescent Swimmers, West Valley High

School

5 th place: , Snow Pit Accuracy with the

Variability of Snow Conditions, West Valley High School

6 th place: Bird Species and Abundance in

Burned and Unburned Spruce Forest, West Valley High School

7 th place: Geochemistry of the Chena and

Tanana Rivers near Fairbanks, Alaska: Effects of Seasonality

and the City of Fairbanks, West Valley High School

8 th place: The Effects of Different Forest

Management Practices on Microbial Communities, Mount

Edgecumbe High School

The 2 nd and 3 rd place winners will not be able to attend the

national JSHS in Bethesda, Maryland. Consequently, the Alaska

Delegation will be as follows:

National Speaker #1: Dolma Ombadykow

National Speaker #2: Arthur Schweitzer

National Poster Presenter: Robin Spielman

National Delegate: Sarah Swanson

National Delegate: Maria Berkeland

Over 140 people were involved in making this year another

success. These awesome individuals included West Valley

High School teachers and , Austin

E. Lathrop High School teacher , Mount

Edgecumbe High School teacher , three ASHSSS

Directors, nine UAF faculty paper/abstract reviewers, 10 UAF

student organization volunteers, 18 UAF judges, 17 community

member research mentors, and 27 sponsors, in addition to many

supportive peers and parents.

This year, 104 awards were distributed to 22 student participants

from five schools from across Alaska: West Valley,

Austin E. Lathrop, Mount Edgecumbe, Palmer, and Chugiak high

schools. The student monetary awards totaled $50,600 in cash,

scholarship and travel funds, which averages $2,300 per student.

Financial program gifts totaled $16,750, cash awards to

student volunteers totaled $800, and symposium costs were

$5,800. Travel funds for the chaperone and the ASHSSS director

totaled $4,500. In addition, $64,000 was contributed by in-kind

support, bringing the total amount of monetary and in-kind funds

utilized during this year’s ASHSSS to over $140,000.

The local organizing committee, the ASHSSS Director Abel Bult-

Ito, Associate Director Barbara Taylor, and Past Director Gary

Laursen, thank all who participated in making this another

successfully conducted Science, Technology, Engineering, and

Mathematics (STEM) experience.

Please visit our website for additional

information and a listing of our contributors. •

Alaska Statewide High School Science Symposium. From left: Arthur

Schweitzer, Kelsey Schober, Dolma Ombadykow, Jiyeon Baek, Robin

Spielman, Abel Bult-Ito. Photo by Kate Pendleton

10 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


Department

Department of Atmospheric Sciences

by Nicole Mölders, Department Chair

UPDATES

We have had a very successful fall. Congratulations to our recent

graduates and their advisors; Oceana Francis (PhD, Bhatt/

Atkinson), John Mayfield (MS, Fochesatto), Jean Talbot (MS,

Bhatt), and Paula Moreira (MS, Zhang). Francis got a post-doc

position at IARC, Mayfield plans to continue his education, Talbot

continues her education to pursue a PhD in Uma S. Bhatt’s

group and Moreira returned to work in her native Brazil.

Rathawat Daengngern and Manatchanok Tantiphiphatthana

won awards to participate in the NCL tutorial at the National

Center for Atmospheric Research. Peter Bienek won the

Outstanding Poster Presentation Award for his poster entitled

“Large-scale climate controls of Interior Alaska river ice breakup”

at the WCRP OSC meeting in Colorado. Trang T. Tran won a

travel award from the American Geophysical Union to attend the

AGU annual meeting in San Francisco to present a poster. Rick

Ladder won travel support to attend the 4 th WCRP International

Conference on Reanalysis, a GEWEX conference. Barbara Day

was promoted to office manager. Please congratulate them when

you see them.

DAS students were very active in publishing their research with

their advisors. Peter Bienek, Huy N.Q. Tran and Trang T. Tran

published first-authored papers in peer-reviewed journals. DAS

is very proud of these scholar achievements. We would like to

express our deep thanks to the donors who make these awards

possible through their donations. We hope to receive further

donations from alumni, faculty, friends, and staff to support

awards in the future.

Kara Sterling, a graduate student advised by Uma S. Bhatt,

helped to develop and coordinate the

, offered December 5 – 6, 2011 at the 2011 American

Geophysical Union Meeting in San Francisco, California.

Richard L. Collins developed an e-delivery of ATM 101 Weather

and Climate of Alaska. This class was offered the first time in

e-delivery format this spring semester and the enrollment tripled

compared to the former face-to-face delivery format, and demand

was higher than seats available in the class. We are working on

offering this class also in the fall semester 2012. Collins also

continued his research on sudden stratospheric warmings and

on estimates of the vertical diffusivity in the upper mesosphere

in the presence of a meosospheric inversion layer by means of

Rayleigh and resonance lidar observations performed at UAF’s

Poker Flat Research Range.

G. Javier Fochesatto and his graduate students worked with

faculty from the geology department (Anupma Prakash) with

applied large aperture scintillometers and a multilevel eddy covariance

tower instrumented with turbulence sensors at 3, 12, and

24 meters above the forest canopy. The collected data serve

to develop methods to determine evapotranspiration in boreal

forests.

Kenneth Sassen used spaceborne radar and lidar measurements

and data from the CloudSat and CALIPSO satellites to

determine the global distributions of cloud frequencies and

heights of middle tropospheric clouds. Since these little-studied

clouds make up about 33% of the total cloud-cover and cover

about 25% of the Earth’s surface, they significantly affect the

Earth’s energy balance and are important for the Earth’s climate.

Nicole Mölders and her graduate students continued examining

the effectiveness of various emission-control measures to

mitigate the PM 2.5

-concentrations in the Fairbanks nonattainment

area and improve air quality and visibility in Alaska National

Parks. Together with her students and faculty from the Geology

and Geophysics Department (Franz Mayer), Chemistry and

Biochemistry Department (Catherine Cahill) and GI (Gerhard

Kramm, Greg Walker) she works on methods for better retrieval

of smoke from wildfires in satellite data.

DAS co-hosted the Alaska Weather Symposium (AWS) during

the 2012 spring break. As in 2011, there was a student poster

and oral presentation competition similar to those held at AMS

or AGU. This year, three students from Japan participated in

this competition along with UAF students from DAS, Computer

Sciences, and SFOS. The winners of the best student poster

award and best student oral presentation award were Jean

Talbot (PhD student mentored by Uma S. Bhatt) and Ketsiri

Leelasakultum (PhD student mentored by Nicole Mölders).

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

by Bill Simpson, Department Chair

We have offered admission to 23 new undergraduate majors and

pre majors and eight graduate students. Our graduating students

again performed very well on the American Chemical Society

Diagnostic of Undergraduate Chemical Knowledge (DUCK) exit

exam, with a median score of 70% nationwide. This is the

second year that we have given this examination, and again our

students have significantly exceeded the national norms. Way to

go graduates! In the spring semester, we had five graduate students

complete their theses (Irina Mueller, PhD; Mary Hogan,

MS; Ashley Wallace, MS; Lisa Smith, MS; Todd Fortun, MS).

Those five students along with three from last summer and two

from the Fall are our ten masters and doctoral graduates for

the year. We look forward to congratulating them at the 2012

commencement.

John Keller retired in the beginning of the 2012 year. We will

miss his teaching, research, and leadership and will recognize

his retirement at our Spring Potluck and Poster Session on

May 3, 2012. We are excited to have Kriya Dunlap officially

start her joint appointment with the department and Institute of

Arctic Biology INBRE program.

In faculty news, Kelly Drew and her neurochemistry research

group have successfully induced hibernation in animals for the

first time. This work was described in a 22 Sep 2011 Popular

Science article. Bill Simpson’s group and collaborators studying

arctic atmospheric chemistry were featured in an article in the 5

Dec 2011 issue of Chemical and Engineering News. The work

SPRING 2012 11


connects air and sea ice. Marvin Schulte’s work was written up

in the Alzheimer’s Resource of Alaska News.

Looking forward to the next academic year, we are excited about

searching for faculty to replace the retirement of John Keller.

We are searching for a graduate program coordinator, who will

help us to better recruit, support, and track future careers of our

graduate students. This person will also improve our connection

with industrial affiliates. We are refocusing our tutoring efforts

into a Chemistry Learning Center that will provide supplemental

instruction and tutoring for undergraduate students, particularly

those in general chemistry. We are excited about helping all our

students through this center.

Larry Duffy, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry will be

working with the Science and Civic Engagement Western Network

(SCEWestNet). The mission of the organization is to inspire, support,

and disseminate campus-based science education reform

strategies that strengthen learning and build civic accountability

among students in colleges and universities.

The project is funded through a grant from the W.M. Keck

Foundation to the National Center for Science and Civic

Engagement at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology.

SCEWestNet will be led by David Burns, Amy Shachter, Richard

Sheardy, and Amanda Moodie and will build on the work of existing

SENCER Centers for Innovation (SCI) West and Southwest.

SCI-West, SCI-Southwest, and the SCEWestNet leadership team

will work with experienced SENCER coordinators in the West to

plan an effective set of seven regionally localized organizational

units or network nodes:

Alaska (Larry Duffy, University of Alaska Fairbanks) Washington

& Oregon (Peter J. Alaimo, Seattle University)

California, Nevada, & Arizona (Amy Shachter, Santa Clara

University)

Montana, Idaho, & Wyoming (Garon Smith, University of

Montana)

Utah, Colorado, & New Mexico (Gary Booth, Brigham Young

University)

Hawaii (Robert Franco, Kapiolani Community College)

Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, & Louisiana (Richard Sheardy, Texas

Woman’s University)

These seven nodal partners will each work with three other institutions

new to SENCER to establish science education curricular

reform projects led by a campus team. The partners will then

work with the SCIs to scale up science education reform efforts.

SCEWestNet will develop a sustainable structure to overcome

obstacles of scale and cost and contribute to achieving significant,

lasting science education reform.

Department of Mathematics and Statistics

by Tony Rickard, DMS Chair

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics (DMS) is currently

conducting a search for a tenure-track faculty position in

statistics. We intend to have a new colleague in statistics join

DMS and CNSM in August 2012.

DMS is offering 11 courses this summer. The Math Bridge

Program will be offered this summer, co-directed by DMS faculty

Jill Faudree and Latrice Laughlin. The program is intended to

provide select students with a one week intensive experience to

prepare for successful completion of MATH 107: Functions for

Calculus or MATH 200: Calculus I, both offered during the first

six-week Summer Sessions 2012.

DMS faculty encourage students to make use of the Math Lab,

located in 305 Chapman. UAF students can receive assistance

with all 100- and 200-level MATH and STAT courses at the Math

Lab from qualified tutors, including evenings and weekends

(see www.uaf.edu/dms for the schedule and more information

about the DMS Math Lab). The DMS Math Lab will also be open

throughout the summer to provide support for students taking

mathematics and statistics courses during Summer Sessions

2012.

Physics Fulbright

Associate Professor of Physics will travel

to South Africa as a Fulbright Scholar for the 2012 –

2013 school year where he will be visiting the Physics

Department at the University of the Western Cape, in Cape

Town South Africa.

Safety First

CNSM Safety Officers, from left, Emily Reiter, Agatha Light, Andy

Krumhardt. Photo by Kate Pendleton

12 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


SPOTLIGHT ON Geology & Geophysics

Revised Geoscience Degree Program

Offers New Options to Undergraduates

In order to offer a greater variety

of courses, allow students to specialize

earlier, and increase the

number of undergraduate research

opportunities, the Department of

Geology & Geophysics is adding four

options to their BS degree program

in Geoscience. The options are

designed to better prepare students

for admission to competitive graduate

programs and/or successful careers

in industry, while new courses take

advantage of recent faculty hires and

growing departmental strengths in

geophysics, tectonics, remote sensing and vertebrate paleontology.

The name of the BS degree program will be changed from

to to reflect the breadth of courses and

options available within the major.

Courses requirements for each of the four options and recommended

4-year plans are available from the Geology &

Geophysics Department office (Reichardt 308) and from faculty

advisors. Current students may choose to pursue a Geology

degree under the current catalog requirements or select one

UAF photo by Todd Paris

of the Geoscience degree options that will appear in the 2012-

2013 UAF Catalog.

The offers students a sound background in a

spectrum of geological disciplines with an emphasis on current

field mapping techniques essential to exploration and

research. This option includes a new upper-division course in

tectonics.

The is designed to provide students with

the skills necessary to locate, excavate, interpret and curate

specimens for museums, agencies or universities. The option

includes new upper-division courses paleontological lab and

field techniques and mass extinctions.

The focuses on the principles,

techniques and applications of remote sensing, GIS, and GPS

to prepare students for careers that require geospatial data

analysis and visualization. A new 200-level course on the fundamentals

of geospatial science will be offered jointly with the

Department of Geography.

The challenges students to use physics to

enhance understanding of geoscience concepts, emphasizing

applications in seismology, volcanology, and glaciology in the

context of the Alaskan landscape. This option is for engineering

fields or other disciplines that use geophysical tools such

as ground penetrating radar or exploration seismology. The

option includes two new upper division courses on ice in climate

systems and foundations of geophysics. •

Geoscience Students Win Award

UAF geoscience graduate students


recently placed in The Imperial Barrel Award (IBA) Program,

a global competition sponsored by the American Association of

Petroleum Geologists. was faculty advisor. Student

teams from around the world receive a real dataset consisting

of seismic data, well data, production infrastructure, etc. and,

in eight short weeks, are asked to evaluate the oil

and gas potential of the area. Each team gives a 25

minute presentation summarizing their results and

recommendations to a panel of industry experts that

judge each presentation based upon its technical

quality, clarity, originality and teamwork.

and California State University-Bakersfield. The IBA competition

gave team members an opportunity to work with real datasets,

develop skills that they will use in the petroleum industry and

display those skills to potential industry employers.

The UAF IBA team would like to give special thanks to their

industry mentors and sponsors:

and of BP and and

of Conoco Phillips. Support for travel to the IBA

competition was provided by the AAPG Pacific section, CNSM and

the Department of Geology and Geophysics. •

This is the 6th Annual AAPG Imperial Barrel Award

competition and the first year UAF participated. The

team competed in the semi-regional finals on March

23rd at Aera Energy in Bakersfield California, where

they placed third in a tough competition against San

Diego State University, California State University-

Long Beach, University of California-Santa Barbara

From left: Cameron Cambell (Exxon Mobil, AAPG Pacific Section

IBA coordinator), Cheryl Sanders, Eric Hutton, Colby Wright,

Ibrahim Ilhan, Niles Dixit, Cathy Hanks. Photo by Colby Wright

SPRING 2012 13


2012

Science Potpourri

Outstan

Andrew Winkleman, Physics

I chose physics at UAF not only because

physics is cool, but UAF is such a great

environment to study. The location is

prime for unusual science demonstrations

and demonstrators. Perhaps the two

go together regardless, but the vibe

is inviting and encouraging. I grew up

in Fairbanks and at UAF, where I have

become interested in not only academics

but such recreations as hiking, camping and even fencing. I

am an Alaskan at heart, and I thank everyone at UAF for the

opportunity and support as I continue my academic career.

Andrew Meng, Statistics

With both of my parents in the Air Force,

I lived and traveled abroad at a young

age. By the age of seven I had lived

in Singapore and the Philippines. My

childhood years in Asia have given me a

strong desire to understand the workings

of the world. At Creighton University I

majored in political science, which was

one avenue in understanding the world.

The only classes I truly enjoyed were its quantitative methods

courses. I moved to Fairbanks, Alaska to be with my fiance.

A year after earning my B.A., I knew I wanted to become a

statistician. I began taking classes at the University of Alaska,

Fairbanks in order to obtain a BS in Statistics.

Sayde Ridling, Biological

Sciences Insects have been a passion

of mine since before I was aware that

there was a science devoted to studying

them. I was a UA Scholar and I was

excited to discover that UAF was voted

one of the top small research universities

in the nation and that they offered many

rare opportunities for undergrads to be

involved in research. I’ve been fortunate

enough to experience real hands-on entomology work both

in the lab and in the field. UAF’s participation in the National

Student Exchange program allowed me to go to the University

of Hawaii, Hilo for an entire year to experience a uniquely new

and different environment complete with entomology research

opportunities. I have also had the privilege of working on my

own research funded by two undergraduate research grants from

Alaska EPSCoR. I can easily say that staying in Alaska to take

advantage of everything that UAF has to offer is one of the best

decisions I ever made.

Top and bottom, photos by Mark Conde; center, photos courtesy CNSM

14 UAF COLLEGE OF NATURAL SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS


ding Student Awards

Samantha Davis, Geology

Having always been an outdoor

enthusiast, studying geology was a

natural choice for me. The UAF Geology

department has provided me with

excellent educational opportunities in

classroom settings as well as lab and

field environments. The highlight of my

educational experience was participating

in the geosciences field camp in the

Alaska Range. I chose to attend UAF because of its strong

science programs and low student to faculty ratios. Over the

course of my education I have become especially interested in

geospatial sciences and environmental geology. After graduation

I plan to move to Juneau and am currently interviewing for jobs

with environmental consulting firms.

“I was excited to

discover that UAF

was voted one of the

top small research

universities in the

nation and that

they offered many

opportunities for

undergrads to be

involved in research.”

— Sayde Ridling

Kathleen Gerdes, Mathematics

I am an Alaskan, born and raised. While

it seems I have always wanted to become

a veterinarian, I still partook in many of

the opportunities my community offered,

from the academic to the athletic. I

participated in the academic decathlon

as competitor and coach; my first major

job was in an Avian Influenza research

laboratory; and I have raised, trained, and

shown my horses Shirley and Frostbite. Through attending UAF, I

was able to continue pursuing these interests—and earn my BS

in Biology and Mathematics—in addition to preparing myself for

entry into veterinary school. I will start earning my Doctorate of

Veterinary Medicine this summer at Texas A&M University.

Jordan Ross, Chemistry and

Biochemistry I’m currently pursuing a

BS in Chemistry with a concentration in

Biochemistry at UAF. Through coursework

I have developed a wide variety of

academic interests primarily those in

the area of biochemistry, physiology, and

neuroscience. I chose to attend UAF

because it is an excellent university with

many opportunities that one can’t find at

a larger university; particularly the research opportunities at UAF

are astounding. Also, I’m a member of the Alaska Air National

Guard which makes UAF all that more attractive. Throughout my

time at UAF, I’ve grown both as a student and person and feel

that I am prepared to tackle the next stage of my education:

medical school.

Katie Rubin, Wildlife Biology

I grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico

but always knew that I wanted to attend

university some place drastically different

from home. I found UAF through a chance

encounter and after visiting the school

in the heart of winter, knew it was the

perfect place for me to continue my

education. The small school has made all

the difference and the close connections

I have made with faculty over the years has been what truly

made my college experience. I love the avid outdoor community

that inhabits Fairbanks, and have enjoyed learning all the winter

activities this unique area has to offer, especially skiing, ice

climbing, and mountaineering. Upon graduation in May I plan

to continue working as a rafting guide out of Talkeetna, and

hopefully pursue my dream of working in Antarctica. Eventually

I would like to pursue higher education in plant and animal

interactions after a few years of travel.

SPRING 2012 15


College of Natural Science and Mathematics

University of Alaska Fairbanks

P.O. Box 755940

Fairbanks, AK 99775-5940

Return Service Requested

NONPROFIT ORG.

U.S. POSTAGE

PAID

FAIRBANKS, AK

PERMIT NO. 2

Front cover photo: Bill Simpson (left) and Steve Walsh stand by the

deployed IceLander-1 system with the BO-105 helicopter used for

deployment in the background. See story on page 4. Photo by Guy Betts

UAF is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution.

UAF Life Sciences Facility takes shape.

UAF photo by Todd Paris

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