CANR’s Summer Institute accepting applications for 2014 session

February 18, 2014 under CANR News

CANR summer institute is now accepting applicationsThe University of Delaware’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) will offer a 10-week Summer Institute for underrepresented populations of undergraduate students who have an interest in pursuing graduate degrees in the agricultural and natural resource sciences.

The Summer Institute will be held on the UD campus in Newark from Monday, June 9, through Friday, Aug. 15.

The program is now accepting applications and the application deadline is April 1. The program is open to students at UD as well as other universities. Enrollment is limited to five undergraduate students and preference is given to students who are completing the junior year of their academic program.

The Summer Institute is intended to provide participating students with an opportunity to learn about the varied and exciting opportunities available in graduate education in the college.

Past Summer Institute scholars conducted research in a variety of topics at CANR, such as studying rice blast disease in rice, heading to coastal communities to poll beachgoers on their opinions about offshore energy production and looking at arsenic in mushrooms and its effect on the human diet.

To read more about past Summer Institute sessions, click here.

Since 2009, 21 students have completed the Summer Institute program.

Maria Pautler, program coordinator, has kept in touch with Summer Institute alumni. “Former participants have found the program quite helpful in discerning their future education options. Several students are now enrolled in graduate programs within the CANR,” said Pautler. “Other students have been accepted into graduate schools in the agricultural and natural resources sciences, such as Ross University Veterinary School, George Washington University and Michigan State University.”

Travel expenses and housing costs provided in University residence halls will be covered. Transportation from residence halls to CANR facilities will be discussed. All students will also receive a stipend to help cover costs of participation.

For more information, contact Tom Sims, CANR deputy dean, at

To download an application, click here.


UD WATER undergraduate internships available

August 31, 2012 under CANR News

Three undergraduate internship opportunities are available to work with the University of Delaware Watershed Action Team for Ecological Restoration (WATER) project during the fall 2012 semester through the spring 2013 semester.

Interns may work up to 150 hours, paid at $10 per hour, and will have an opportunity to gain experience in areas such as geohydrology, ecological engineering, soil and water conservation, water resources management, and environmental education.

Internship requirements include an overall GPA of 3.0 or greater, the willingness to work in both the fall 2012 and spring 2013 semesters and to participate in periodic project meetings with the UD WATER team.

Interested students should visit the Delaware Water Resources Center website to download an application.

The deadline to apply for the internship is Friday, Sept. 28.

Applications should be sent to Maria Pautler, research associate in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Department of Plant and Soil Sciences.

The UD WATER Project is a multi-disciplinary project focused on water resource management and water quality, with an emphasis on practices and programs that minimize UD’s impact on the White Clay creek, a wild and scenic river whose tributaries flow through the UD campus, and the Christina River.

The UD WATER Project team currently consists of faculty and professionals associated with the Delaware Water Resources Center, the UD Water Resources Agency, the Delaware Geological Survey, the University’s Stormwater Management and Grounds programs, and the City of Newark.

Interns will be selected and can begin work on their projects by October 5, 2012.


CANR Summer Institute starts scholars on road to grad school

June 6, 2011 under CANR News

Only in its third year, the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) Summer Institute at the University of Delaware is achieving its goal by seeing a large number of participants attend graduate school.

The 10-week long summer program, which is geared at underrepresented populations of undergraduate students who have an interest in pursuing graduate degrees in the agriculture and natural resource sciences, will see some of its past participants graduate and head off to graduate school this fall.

Maria Pautler, CANR Summer Institute program coordinator, said she is encouraged by the success rate of the program. Of the 11 student participants since the inaugural year of 2009, five have been accepted into graduate programs. She said she looks forward to assisting the five students selected for the 2011 CANR Summer Institute, which runs June 6-Aug. 12, to ensure they have a great experience as they “get to know the ropes” of going to graduate school.

Kishana Williamson, a senior animal science and wildlife conservation double major, participated in the program in 2009 and will be headed to graduate school to get her master’s degree in public health microbiology and emerging infectious disease at George Washington University.

Williamson said that the CANR Summer Institute helped prepare her for graduate school by giving her experience in hands-on research. “Having research experience in general, regardless of what it is, is always helpful because then people know that you’ve done a project and contributed.”

During her time at the CANR Summer Institute, Williamson was paired with Jacob Bowman, associate professor of entomology and wildlife ecology, and she worked with Bowman’s graduate students doing bird surveys to determine species diversity and tracking deer to determine migration patterns.

She said of the CANR Summer Institute, “I think it’s a really great experience, just the ability to get your hands dirty in a research laboratory. I think research in general is great but if you don’t have time during the school year, the summer is a perfect time to do it. They pay you, you get somewhere to stay and you learn a lot — it’s a really good opportunity.”

Another student headed to graduate school after participating in the program is Shurnevia Strickland, a senior in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences. Strickland attended the CANR Summer Institute in 2010 and will be attending graduate school at the University of Delaware where she will study genetics and take classes such as biochemistry and bioinformatics.

She called the CANR Summer Institute a very positive experience that helped her decide that she wanted to go on to graduate school. “The CANR Summer Institute showed me what it would be like working in a lab, similar to what I’d be doing in graduate school. From there, I knew that if I wanted a successful, long-lasting career in genetics, I’d need to get a master’s degree.”

Strickland recommends the CANR Summer Institute to those who are unsure of their plans after graduation, especially those who have not had experience with hands-on research. “Research is one of those things that you’ll either love or hate, and it’ll help narrow down not only the type of work, but the subject you want to work in as well.”

She also said, “The earlier you participate in a program like this, the better. The Summer Institute is really a hidden gem within the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.”

Kristopher Dewberry, a pre-veterinary medicine and biosciences major with minors in biology and wildlife conservation, attended the summer program in 2009 and said that he researched the Marek’s disease virus. His favorite part of the program was “the opportunity to work for a professor directly and on a real research project. I learned a magnitude of research techniques that assisted me in future research endeavors as well as a better understanding of the real scientific community and what research has to offer.”

Echoing Strickland’s thoughts, Dewberry said that he would recommend the program to anybody who has an interest in research but hasn’t had the opportunity to have hands on experience. “The CANR Summer Institute gives its participants an excellent insight into doing research on a graduate school level, as well as the opportunity to interact with faculty on a professional level. I know these experiences helped me mature and have an idea on what graduate and professional schools were looking for in candidates.”

Dewberry will be attending Cornell University in the fall as a first year doctor of veterinary medicine candidate.

Tom Sims, CANR deputy dean, said the college “is thrilled by the successes of our former CANR Summer Institute scholars and wishes them all the best in their graduate education programs. We also greatly appreciate the wonderful mentoring provided to the Summer Institute scholars by our faculty.”

Sims added that CANR “is appreciative of the initial grant funding provided by the UD Office of Graduate and Professional Education. Their help allowed us to begin what is now a permanent CANR program that is now successfully supporting the efforts of students from underrepresented populations to pursue graduate and professional degrees.”

For more information on the CANR Summer Institute, visit the website.

Article by Adam Thomas

Photo by Danielle Quigley

The original posting of this article can be viewed on UDaily


CANR Summer Institute offers glimpse of graduate student life

July 20, 2010 under CANR News

This summer five undergraduate students are conducting research with faculty mentors in the University of Delaware College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR), experiencing the challenges and rewards of what a graduate education at UD might be like.

As participants in the Summer Institute in the Agricultural and Natural Resources Sciences, hosted by the college, these students are taking part in ongoing research projects guided by personal faculty mentors, networking with current graduate students and other staff within CANR, and interacting with industry professionals.

“The Summer Institute is a team effort by faculty from all departments in our college,” said Tom Sims, deputy dean of the college. “It provides these five outstanding undergraduate students the opportunity to conduct hands-on research and learn about the range of graduate education opportunities available in the agricultural and natural resources sciences.”

Now in its second year, the 10-week program — funded by the college and a Graduate Innovation and Improvement Grant from UD’s Office of Graduate and Professional Education — draws students from under-represented populations who are interested in a graduate degree in agriculture and natural resource sciences.

Maria Pautler, the program’s coordinator, said the Summer Institute was expanded from 4 to 10 weeks after last year’s participants suggested a longer program. The extended program allows students to become more involved with their research projects and present their findings at a campus-wide symposium at the end of the summer, she said.

“This, coupled with opportunities to attend seminars, workshops, and panelist luncheons, is exposing the students to facts and opinions on preparation for, and life in and beyond, graduate school,” Paulter said.

The 2010 CANR Summer Institute participants are:

Kamedra McNeil, of Forestville, Md., is a molecular biology major at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina. McNeil is involved in the Winston-Salem Student Government Association, Tri-Beta Biological Honors Society, NSCS Scholars and Pre-Marc Scholars. She is interested in a career in forensic biology. During her time at the Summer Institute, McNeil is studying different genes associated with photoperiod in plants. Her faculty mentor is Randall Wisser, assistant professor of plant and soil sciences.

Shurnevia Strickland, of Philadelphia, is a senior applied animal science major at UD. Strickland is secretary and webmaster for Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS). She is interested in future research with genetics. At the Summer Institute, Strickland is studying the endothelin 3 gene in the silkie chicken. Her faculty mentor is Carl Schmidt, associate professor of animal and food sciences.

Rochelle Day, of Laurel, Del., is a senior pre-veterinary medicine and animal biosciences major at UD. Day is a member of Puppy Raisers of UD (PROUD) and MANRRS, and is looking toward a career in animal pathology. At the Summer Institute, Day is mapping the genome of the Infectious Laryngotracheitis Virus (ILTV), an upper respiratory disease in birds that causes economic losses for the poultry industry. Her faculty mentor is Calvin Keeler, professor of animal and food sciences.

Rothman Reyes, of Long Island, N.Y., is a sophomore pre-veterinary medicine and animal biosciences major at UD with minors in sexuality and gender studies, and women’s studies. Reyes raises puppies for Guiding Eyes for the Blind and is a member of the LEARN mentor program. He also serves as co-president of the PROUD special interest community. Reyes hopes to practice veterinary medicine at a zoo. At the Summer Institute, Reyes is creating a fosmid library, where he will induce a mutation onto the Infectious Laryngotracheitis Virus (ILTV) to create a vaccine. His faculty mentor is also Calvin Keeler.

Kristina Barr, of Kingstree, SC., is a senior biology major at Benedict College in Columbia, S.C. She is a member of the Environmental Awareness Club at her school and plans to pursue a career as an ecologist. Her research at the Summer Institute involves the effects of rose bushes on birds’ ability to forage for food. Her faculty mentors are Jacob Bowman, associate professor, and Greg Shriver, assistant professor, both of entomology and wildlife ecology.

Article by Chelsea Caltuna

Read the article on UDaily by clicking here.