Highlights of 2005-2006

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The theme for this year is no doubt "partnership."  ESF-SAF worked with the ESF Women's Caucus, NY Project Learning Tree, ESF Earth Week and MayFest Committees, US Forest Service, Office of Off-Campus Services, AWRA, Cornell Cooperative Extension, NYSAF, and the Outer Comstock Neighborhood Association.  These partnerships were facilitated by Chair Nan Davis, Vice Chair Dani Frederick, Secretary Nate Anderson, Treasurer Lise Comartin, Councilor Mike Tripodi, Memorial Grove Chair Kayla Paschal, Listserv Manager Denise Keele, webmaster Heather Engelman, and advisor Dr. René H. Germain.

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   Memorial Grove Maintenance, May 6, 2006

Inventory, assessment, and stake replacement as needed. 

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 Yearend BBQ, May 3, 2006

Will classes behind us, and exams ahead, we spent a little bit of "Reading Day" with good food and good company at Dani's place.

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   Movie Night, April 25, 2006

ESF-SAF hosted an encore presentation of The Greatest Good, the Forest Service's Centennial Film.  http://www.fs.fed.us/greatestgood/

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MayFest, April 25, 2006

As part of MayFest, we were to demonstrate field skills and give audience members the opportunity to try their hands (and feet) at techniques.  However, because of the inclement weather, we adjusted the activity to a indoor Q & A session.  Our seniors also discussed their Integrated Management projects during MayFest's poster presentation in the Carrier Dome. 

MayFest is a joint S. U.—SUNY- ESF, campus-wide, multi-venue event highlighting the wide diversity of student creative works on the campuses.  It is a day-long, continuous and simultaneous series of student performances, presentations, displays, screenings and other activities in a “festival” atmosphere.  This was the second year of the program.

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SAF Scavenger Hunt, April 19, 2006

As part of the campus' Earth Week festivities, and in early celebration of Arbor Day,  SAF coordinated a forestry skills competency competition and trivia contest, with participants vying for gift certificates to Eastern Mountain Sports and Small Stores.  SAF members were stationed across the Quad to offer tutorials, answer questions, and encourage students from all majors to enter the contest.  Note: in New York, as in many of its neighboring states, Arbor Day falls on the last Friday in April.

Far Left:  Natural Resources Management major Mike Tripodi (seated at table) administers the trivia portion of the competition.  Left:  Lise Comartin and Kayla Paschel take a break after ensuring the stations are all ready to go; in Kayla's hand left hand is a BAF-10 prism.  In her right is one of the Faculty of Forest and Natural Resource Management's hand crafted "short-reach Biltmore sticks," affectionately dubbed a "Bilt-less."  The commercial version of the hypsometer requires an arm length of at least 25"; these, however, were made in a variety of lengths the old fashioned way in order to accommodate more petite members of the class.  Right:  Forest Engineering student Meghan Scott receives instruction in setting a compass prior to attempting the compass and pacing portion of the competition.  Far right:  Water resources major Derek Pursell works on the topographic map section.  In the foreground are identified soil samples; competitors may compare these to their unknowns to assist in their classification.

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Breakfast with Sally Fairfax, April 8, 2006

A few of us joined Dr. Sally Fairfax, Henry J. Vaux Distinguished Professor of Forest Policy,  and Associate Dean, Instruction and Student Affairs, College of Natural Resources, University of California-Berkeley to further discuss  land trusts and conservation easements, and for some old-fashioned mentoring. Dr. Fairfax was on campus to deliver the keynote address at the combined 23rd Annual C.E. Farnsworth Fellowship Ceremony/Women in Scientific and Environmental Professions Lecture Series.  We congratulate the honored Fellows (Diane Kiernan, John Munsell, and Brandon Vickery), all active members of ESF-SAF.

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Elections, March 27, 2006

Congratulations to our new officers!

Chair- Lise Comartin
Vice-Chair- Brandon Vickery
Treasurer- Artem Treyger
Secretary- Kayla Paschal
Memorial Grove Chair- Harold Connelly
Councilor & Listserv Manager- Nate Anderson
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Guest speaker:  Nancy Grulke, on ozone deposition, March 27,2006

Dr. Nancy Grulke, a physiological ecologist and Project Leader, Atmospheric Deposition on Western Ecosystems, at the Pacific Southwest Research Station, USDA Forest Service, in Riverside, California, met with us over dinner to discuss her Women in Scientific and Environmental Professions lecture "Air pollution and the Californian Wildfires:  an insidious link."  

Dr. Grulke began investigating ozone specifically after it consistently appeared as a significant variable in observational studies.  She found that high levels of ozone are correlated to sluggish stomatal responses in sensitive species like Ponderosa pine.  Trees continue to transpire at night, making them more susceptible to drought, and thus at greater risk for fires.  Further, trees in highly polluted areas are retaining needles for much shorter periods of time (only one year in the most polluted sites), and have reduced fine roots.  As a result, trees have less photosynthate, and with less root mass for storage, reallocate storage to the boles.  Trees end up short and fat, with thicker litter layers beneath them, with skewed c:n ratios (and subsequent changes in the microfauna to break it down) and more susceptible to bark beetles, especially in the wet years following several years of drought.  This is a a very common weather pattern in the montane forests of southern California.  Other atmospheric pollutants can act as fertilizers, further altering growth patterns.  Also associated with these changes is a shift in species to white fir, which is of considerably less commercial value because of its higher pitch content.

She also shared her concern that ozone is often ignored in models, despite its prevalence (more than twice pre-industrial rates, with predicted increase of 3x pre-industrial rates by 2020, and large areas of the country with levels regularly high enough to restrict outdoor activities) and higher concentrations than carbon dioxide (~1.6 times pre-industrial rates). 

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Adopt-a-street, March 26 & April 28, 2006

We distributed flyers to houses, and picked up trash along the utility strip on the 100-400 blocks of Ostrom Avenue. Gloves and plastic bags were be provided by Syracuse University's Office of Off-Campus Student Services, which coordinates the program.  "The point of the Adopt-a-Street program is for student organizations to make  a positive impact in their community and ultimately to improve the quality of life in the neighborhood."  The program is expected to improve communication and collaboration between the temporary student and the resident populations that share the University neighborhoods.   We will revisit our assigned blocks monthly throughout the academic year.

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Project Learning Tree Workshop, March 1 & 8, 2006

Resource professionals are often called upon as informal educators regarding an array of environmental questions.    With this in mind, NYPLT facilitators John Graham (NYDEC, Cortland) and Heather Engelman (ESF graduate student and member of ESF-SAF) shared fun, interactive, age-appropriate, inexpensive activities that we could use to share what we do and why we do it. And since teachers look for ways to make their classes more active and interactive without breaking their budget,  teachers from Westhill CSD, The New School, Jowonio School, and SU Early Education and Childcare Center also participated in this two-evening long workshop.

Top left:  Marta Loomis,  Westhill CSD, and Beth Portuese, ESF Forest Policy MS student observe their adopted tree. Top middle:  ESF environmental education MS student Emily DeBolt creates a bark rubbing in her study of eastern larch. Top right:  Workshop facilitator and NYDEC Forester John Graham walks participants through a dichotomous key to identify a red maple.   Bottom left:  Julie Thomas and Mary Piron, both of the Syracuse University Early Education and Childcare Center; Heather Engelman, ESF silviculture PhD candidate and workshop facilitator; Rebecca Dwyer, The New School; and Hope Kuniholm, SU Early Education and Childcare Center, try to illustrate the connections between the organisms large and small that they might find in the forest.  Bottom middle:  Mary Cunningham, SU Early Education and Childcare Center, and Kendra Harper, Jowonio School, read a story. Bottom right:  Environmental education MS students Mary Ewers and Josh Conway search through their new guides to find activities that could feature a tree cookie. 

This workshop, with commentary by Engelman, Harper, Jennifer Holland (elementary school teacher), and Mike Tripodi (ESF undergraduate) was featured in the April 2006 Forestry Source.  Click here for the PDF.

We thank University Police for their assistance with parking, the Syracuse and Central New York Teacher's Centers and Enviromail for posting the information to their members, John Wagner for arranging CFE credit, NYPLT and ESF-SAF for snacks, Forest Properties for providing a northern cedar tree cookie "coaster" for each participant, NYDEC for releasing John early each day for his trip to campus, and NYPLT for subsidizing $10 of each person's registration/materials fee.

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Guest Speaker, Dan Shults, (FNRM '71),  on issues and opportunities in the Northwest, February 28, 2006

Dan Shults (FNRM '71) discussed “Forest Policy Issues in the Pacific Northwest" in Dr. Malmsheimer’s Natural Resources Administrative Law class, which was opened to all for the session.  Mr. Shults then met with SAF and others to discuss "Job Opportunities with the Oregon Department of Forestry"  and general trends and issues in the Pacific Northwest. Mr. Schults is the ODF’s Southern Oregon Area Director. He is responsible for administering all Department programs in the Southern Oregon Area. This Area covers seven counties in southwestern Oregon and includes five administrative Districts, management of the 95,000 acre Elliott State Forest near Coos Bay, and the D.L Phipps Forest Nursery.
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Remediation of Onondaga Lake, February 21- 22 2006

Part I:  Political and Social History of Onondaga Lake's Remediation, featuring Richard Smardon, SUNY-ESF; Sam Sage, Atlantic States Legal Foundation; and John McAuliffe, Honeywell.  Part II:  The Science Behind Onondaga Lake's Remediation-- sediment and lake chemistry, developing long term monitoring programs, etc., with Don Hughes,Onondaga Lake Cleanup Corporation; and Myrna Hall and Dave Matthews, both of SUNY-ESF.   This two-part series was organized and sponsored by the American Water Resources Association.

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   NYSAF Meeting, Liverpool, NY, February 1-3, 2006

Several of our student leaders were selected to participate in NYSAF's Leadership Workshop that preceded the conference.  NYSAF Convention, Holiday Inn, Liverpool, NY. 

Brandon Vickery  Dani Frederick  from ESF, and a representative each from Paul Smith's College and the NYS Ranger School served on a reverse panel--they asked questions of the audience about the status of forestry jobs in New York State, how today's professionals handle ethical questions (and what sorts of questions they might face), and what students can do now and in the future. Nan Davis facilitated the discussion, while Kayla Pascal and others provided microphone assistance to the audience.  Discussion was lively, but truncated to15 minutes. 

Five graduate students also presented their research during the 2nd Annual Graduate Student Presentation portion of the convention, and others prepared posters that were featured at Thursday night's reception.

Nan Davis and Coraline Falco pictured above, and other members also talked to practitioners about the ESF-SAF student chapter, and found the new t-shirts to be popular with foresters all across New York State.

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   T-shirt sales begin, January 23, 2006

Front (at left) and back (at right) of the new t-shirts.  On sale soon at the table in Marshall Foyer, or contact Dani.

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   Mid-Year Potluck Supper, December 5, 2005

While this event usually occurs just prior to Thanksgiving, heavy courseloads encouraged moving this later in the semester.  Mike Tripodi and housemates hosted the annual potluck supper, this year celebrating the winter-holiday-of-your-choice. Back to Top

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   Conversation with Jamie Savage, NYSAF Chair-Elect  (November 21, 2005)

Mr. Jamie Savage discussed student participation in SAF, specifically at the upcoming NYSAF Winter Meeting specifically.  In addition to our usual assistance with logistics, NYSAF would like 4-5 students representing different schools to sit on a panel, most likely on the morning of Feb. 2.  For more information about this panel, please review the minutes of the meetings on Nov. 21, and the follow-up discussion on Nov. 21 here.

Mr. Savage is a graduate of ESF, earning a BS (Resources Management) in 1986 and a MS (Silviculture).  He had previously earned an AAS at Paul Smith's College (1984).  He is currently an Associate Professor at the New York State Ranger School in Wanakena, NY.

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   Movie Night, November 16, 2005

ESF-SAF hosted a viewing and discussion of the Forest Service's Centennial Film.  Dr. Dave Nowak, Project Leader for the Forest Service Office in Syracuse, introduced the film and facilitated the discussion.  Snacks were provided, and several classes offered extra credit for attendance.

http://www.fs.fed.us/greatestgood/

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Tree planting and community assistance, November 12-13, 2005

What a glorious November weekend here in Syracuse!  This was the best weather yet for our outdoor projects! 

Tree planting on the south side of the city with Cornell Cooperative Extension (see map) on November 12.  Here's a pat on the back from CCE's Stephen Harris: "The SAF crew is always high energy and great to work with." 

And on Sunday, November 13, we continued planting with the Outer Comstock Neighborhood Association and then headed to Ed Smith Elementary School (corner of Lancaster Ave and Broad St) for brush clearing and trail maintenance. 

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SAF National Convention, Fort Worth, TX, October 19-23, 2005

Good times were had by all.  The ESF Quizbowl team bested at least 50% of the challengers and did especially well in the silviculture category, and Nan Davis accepted the website award for us.  Nan and others had good conversation with Craig Vollmer, NYS-SAF Chapter President about ESF student involvement in the NYSAF meeting in February. Also, great exposure to job opportunities at all levels in all sectors including private, local, state and federal positions.  Good networking opportunities. Very insightful question sessions.  By some counts there were between 300 and 400 students at the Convention,  with very good representation of women foresters from ESF. Thanks to ESF-SAF for convention scholarships.  Next year’s convention is in Pittsburgh, close enough for high ESF-SAF attendance.In the mean time, consider joining one of the SAF working groups. Back to Top

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Memorial Grove Maintenance/Freshman Field Trip, October 8, 2005

Spent a cold, rainy day outside, had fun with friends, and learned a little bit about conifer and hardwood plantation silviculture along the way.  "That was an excellent display of commitment put to test by really terrible weather!" reports Nan.  We received a Thank You letter from Dr. Nowak expressing his appreciation for our assistance with the Field Trip. Back to Top

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Website ties for second place!

"The SUNY/ESF SAF Student Chapter tied for SECOND PLACE in the SAF Student Chapter Website contest.  The other 2nd Place winner is Penn State University in University Park, Pennsylvania.

Your Student Chapter’s website – and your school’s SAF Student Chapter – are both awesome!  The Chapter did a fantastic job, as usual, and should feel very proud of themselves. This was an extremely close contest this year, as was the SAF Outstanding Student Chapter contest.

The student awards will be presented during the National Convention in Fort Worth, Texas, at National Assembly on Friday, October 21st at 2:30 p.m. in the Ballroom A/B/C of the convention center."

        -- received via email from Carol McKernon, Member Services Manager, SAF

Nan Davis accepted the award on behalf of the chapter.

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Ice cream Social, Sept. 19

Dani Frederick narrated a brief powerpoint presentation highlighting the chapters activities over the last few years, and Lise Comartin, Nate Anderson, Nan Davis, and Dr. Germain touted the benefits of membership in the student chapter.  Make-you-own sundaes were a tangible, and tasty, reinforcement that while we work hard, we have fun, too.

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MEETINGS:
Most of our members have graduated, leaving many opportunities for new students to gain leadership experience.  Contact Dr. Germain to discuss which role is right for you. 

 

ESF-SAF
Growing forests, and foresters.


 

 

 

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