Post Docs, Susannah Lerman and Brad Timm Highlighted in Switzer Foundation Newsletter

    Susannah Lerman: Connecting Urban Dwellers with Nature Through Their Yards   When you look at your yard, you probably see some grass, a few flowers, maybe a bird or two.  Susannah Lerman, 2010 Fellow and 2011 Leadership Grant recipient, sees a huge opportunity for wildlife habitat with little or no investment. Lerman began her career wanting to work with species in remote areas, but she soon realized that cities offer the best opportunities for educating people about nature. Now she finds ways to increase citizen participation in increasing wildlife habitat and reconnect people with nature, particularly in urban areas.  She partners with the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center and heads their Neighborhood Nestwatch project in Springfield, MA, a citizen science project to study nesting populations of common backyard songbirds in the yards of 100 volunteer families across western Massachusetts. Read more   Brett Thelen and Brad Timm: Measuring Effectiveness of Citizen Science on Amphibian Conservation with "Salamander Crossing Brigades" 2004 Fellow Brett Thelen, Science Director for Conservation at the Harris...
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Informing Conservation Decisions Through the Inventory of Local Lands Course

Most of the forests in Massachusetts are privately owned.  The decisions these private landowners make have a significant influence on the public benefits that our forests provide, however, landowners aren’t always sure what types of natural resources are on their land.  This spring semester, the “Natural Resources Inventory of Local Lands” class developed natural resource inventories for portions of the 800 acre Eaglebrook School in Deerfield.  The goal of the inventories was to give Eaglebrook the information they need to make informed conservation decisions and to better incorporate the woods into their curriculum. Working in interdisciplinary teams, students designed and implemented natural resource inventories to gather data on wildlife habitat, hydrological features, forest vegetation, land use history, recreational trails, invasive species, and vernal pools.  Students collected and analyzed data, interpreted results, created GIS maps, and produced a professional report for each of these communities. In addition, students presented their findings at a meeting of science faculty and students, answering questions and helping...
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Dr. David Damery Instrumental in Bringing $6M in Funding to UMass Amherst to Form New Energy Extension Initiative

Dr. David Damery Instrumental in Bringing $6M in Funding to UMass Amherst to Form New Energy Extension Initiative

Courtesy: Daily Hampshire Gazette By DEBRA SCHERBAN Thursday, May 1, 2014 AMHERST – Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Rick Sullivan today announced a four-year, $6 million grant to form a new UMass Amherst Energy Extension Initiative. It will serve as a resource on renewable and clean energy options for cities and towns, industry, hospitals, colleges and universities, nonprofits and other organizations across the Commonwealth. “This investment shows the Patrick administration is committed to keeping Massachusetts a national clean energy leader,” said Secretary Sullivan. “The initiative will help municipalities as well as organizations across the Commonwealth cut their energy use, create jobs and protect the environment.” He made the announcement during a day-long workshop, “Helping Communities with Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency,” today on the UMass Amherst campus for city and town energy managers, mayors, other officials, businesses and planners. The UMass Amherst Energy Extension Initiative created by the grant will promote adoption of renewable energy technology and energy efficiency activities across the state. It...
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