Reflections from the GCC Graduate Seminar Course

Views from the Graduate Seminar

By Rachel Brooks, GCC Fellow & PhD Student

As the Global Change program develops, so do the required courses for the PhD-students and Fellows. This year we added a new “advanced” seminar session that is student lead and designed. After a few introductory seminars lead by Jeff Walters and Bruce Hull, we (the students) spent time brainstorming and planning the rest of the semester. With the help of numerous sticky notes and a few whiteboard markers, our seminar agenda emerged: practicing science ...

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Crowdfunding project aims to send a Hokie to Capitol Hill

From VT News

The BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Human health disparities in Appalachia. The Dan River coal ash spill in North Carolina. The water crisis in Flint, Michigan. Air pollution in urban industrialized areas around the world.

The list goes on.

Now more than ever, U.S. laws designed to protect and improve public health and the environment, such as the Clean Water Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Clean Air ...

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Deep cuts for research funding at flagship Midwestern universities will further weaken local economies

From The Atlantic

Four floors above a dull cinder-block lobby in a nondescript building at the Ohio State University, the doors of a slow-moving elevator open on an unexpectedly futuristic 10,000-square-foot laboratory bristling with technology. It’s a reveal reminiscent of a James Bond movie. In fact, the researchers who run this year-old, $750,000 lab at OSU’s Spine Research Institute resort often to Hollywood comparisons.

Thin beams of blue light shoot from 36 of the same kind of infrared motion cameras used ...

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More rain, more pollution in the future

A comment on this article from Dr. Cayelan Carey:

“This study highlights the importance of studying both land use and climate change simultaneously when predicting future water quality: these two stressors will interact, potentially synergistically, to increase phytoplankton blooms that threaten human health and freshwater ecosystem services. One other take-home message that is important to keep in mind is that there will be large geographic variation in lake and reservoir water quality responses to altered climate and land use.”

Our research ...

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The Global Change Center partners with Hollins University to enhance student careers in life science

From VT News

Pursuing graduate school in the sciences requires more than just passion – it also requires knowledge of the nuts and bolts of research, which usually comes through robust mentorship.

Developing strong mentor-mentee relationships is one of the main goals of a new partnership between the Global Change Center at Virginia Tech and Hollins University. The two universities recently signed a memorandum of understanding to offer Hollins undergraduate students summer research experience in Virginia ...

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Postcards from the field: Maya Wilson is on the “Pine Islands” in the Bahamas

From Birds Caribbean

Maya Wilson is a graduate student in Biological Sciences at Virginia Tech and a fellow in the Interfaces of Global Change Program. She is researching the ecology and life history of the Bahama Swallow, an endangered species endemic to the Bahamas. Maya is one of the dedicated young scholars who were awarded the BirdsCaribbean David S. Lee Fund Grant and her work is critical to understanding the Bahama Swallow and informing conservation strategies. Here, she discusses her ...

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Trump urged to remain in Paris Climate Agreement

From National Public Radio

President Trump is expected to face pressure from European Union leaders at the G-7 summit in Italy next week to keep the U.S. in the Paris Climate Treaty.

Trump recently signed an executive order aiming to roll back President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan but did not address the Paris agreement. European Union leaders aren’t the only ones who are imploring Trump to keep the U.S. as ...

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Seminar Announcement: Dr. Kate Langwig- Ecology, Impacts, and Extinction in Emerging Infectious Diseases of Wildlife

Dr. Kate Langwig, is a postdoc at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her research address questions on pathogen transmission and dynamics, heterogeneity in host susceptibility and infectiousness, the impacts of pathogens on ecological communities, and the conservation and policy implications of infectious disease.

Dr. Langwig will give a research seminar this Thursday, January 19th at 3:30 pm in Fralin Auditorium. Her talk will be titled, Ecology, Impacts, and Extinction in Emerging Infectious Diseases of Wildlife. 

The seminar will be followed by a reception in the Fralin Atrium, sponsored by ...

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Dr. Tyrone Hayes will give the 6th Annual Martin Luther King Seminar January 20th

In commemoration of Martin Luther King Jr., Virginia Tech has a weeklong schedule to remember and honor the man who drove out hate and darkness through love and light. This year’s celebration theme is “Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere: The Legacy Between Two Movements.”

The schedule of events includes a special research seminar hosted by the Diversity Committee of the Biological Sciences Department featuring Dr. Tyrone Hayes. The lecture may be of particular interest to the Global Change community at Virginia Tech. In ...

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Water is the latest battleground in Syria

From CNN

Nour, a housewife in Damascus, says the latest joke in the Syrian capital is also a prayer of sorts: “May the gold you hold become water.”

It is a half-hearted attempt to make light of a water crisis that is impacting millions in Damascus, a city that has been relatively sheltered from the violence raging elsewhere in the country.

Nour said that her family just got water on Tuesday morning, after four days without access. Her family quickly lined up ...

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Fighting the climate crisis with $150 homes in Africa

From CNN

Deforestation and climate change have triggered a housing crisis in West Africa

Millions of households in the Sahel region of West Africa live under a growing threat. Deforestation and climate change have decimated the available supply of wood that is used for traditional roof construction, forcing many to use imported sheet metal. This is both prohibitively expensive and unsuited to the climate, entrenching poverty and making homes that boil in summer and freeze in winter.

One creative enterprise is reaching ...

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