The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation
The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation was established in 1984 in New York through a bequest from the estate of Margaret Sussman in memory of her mother, Edna Bailey Sussman. Margaret Sussman was a 1934 graduate of Smith College and a successful artist. Her father, Dr. Otto Sussman, was president and director of American Metal Company, the predecessor of AMAX, Inc. Mrs. Otto Sussman – Edna Bailey Sussman – became interested in environmental issues and Navajo Indian relations. It is fitting that the Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation sponsors research and internships that apply hard science to solving existing environmental problems.
The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation supports internships for students matriculated in graduate degree programs at eight institutions: SUNY ESF, the Colorado School of Mines, Duke University, San Diego State University, Scripps Institute of Oceanography at University of California at San Diego, the University of Michigan, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, and Yale University.
SUNY ESF graduate students benefit tremendously from continuing generosity of the Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation. Between 1985 and 2013, 374 SUNY-ESF graduate students received more than $1.47 million to pursue "careers, the activities of which affect the environment, to understand the interaction of their chosen profession with environmental concerns."
The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation will provide support directly to students who are matriculated in graduate programs at SUNY ESF. Internships must meet the following conditions:
- The Intern position would not have been filled if the organization had to compensate the Intern out of its own funds. The Sussman Fund will consider enriching internship support for those who receive less than minimal support.
- The Intern will be utilized in an assignment involving the preservation of wildlife, the control of pollution, the preservation of natural land resources, or similar subject matter related to the environment.
- The Intern will not be utilized in sales, production, or any other capacity not directly related to the environment.
- The Intern will not act as a lobbyist, nor will the host organization be one whose primary function is to lobby.
- The Internship will occur in the United States or its territories and have a US-focus. Sussman will not fund internships to study non-US species.
- The Internship will not take place on the SUNY ESF campus or its properties.
- SUNY-ESF may submit a maximum number of proposals that must meet minimal criteria as established by the Campus Coordinator. The maximum number of proposals accepted by the Sussman Trustees is established each year immediately prior to the application deadline. In 2013, ESF was be permitted to submit 12 proposals; we anticipate a similar number in 2014.
- In 2013, EBS Trustees are particularly interested in considering proposals suggesting notable urban or climate related projects.
The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation provides financial support for graduate students who are currently matriculated in graduate degree programs (MS, MF, MLA, MPS, or PhD) at SUNY ESF. Applications from students who are currently applying for admission into graduate programs cannot be accepted. Faculty, staff and undergraduate students are not eligible to apply for Sussman Funds.
Amount of Support
In 2014, the Sussman Foundation will pay interns a maximum of $13 per hour, for up to 35 hours per week, for 14 weeks. The scope of the work proposed should match the total funding requested. Applicants are required to provide a separate budget justification page in support of their requests.
Students may request support for internships conducted during any time of the year, but most internship proposals request funding within the summer. Sussman Internships do not provide tuition scholarships or health insurance benefits. These costs are the responsibility of the applicant. Sussman interns must report taxable income to the Internal Revenue Service.
Applicants must submit one scanned digital (PDF) copy of all documents (one single file, please). The applicant’s name should be on each page of the application and on supporting materials. Use standard, basic, copy or printer paper – no tinted or letterhead bond – for the cover, proposal, resume, and budget pages. [Students are advised to maintain copies of their proposals]. Please send the digital PDF file via e-mail to email@example.com:
- Application Cover Page (Word)
Specify the start and end dates of the internship period.
- Proposal: Describe the work of the intended internship and how it will contribute to your educational and career goals
What work will be performed during the internship and how will this work benefit the host organization? How will Sussman be acknowledged? Identify the host site supervisor by name and title and describe how the supervisor will evaluate the work. Statements longer than 500 words will not be accepted.
- Letter from Faculty Advisor (Typically the Major Professor)
Statements should be addressed to The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation (c/o The Graduate School). The faculty advisor’s statement must explicitly discuss the following: (1) the start and end date of the internship, (2) the relationship between the internship and the student's academic program of study, (3) the nature of the work to be accomplished, (4) the name of immediate internship host site supervisor, (5) how the internship will be supervised and evaluated.
- Letter from Internship (host site) Sponsor (on official organization stationery with original signature)
Statements should be addressed to The Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation (c/o The Graduate School), must be written by the person who will directly supervise the internship, and should explicitly discuss the following: (1) the start and end date of the internship, (2) the importance of the internship to the host organization, (3) the nature of the work to be accomplished, (4) how the internship will be supervised and evaluated.
- ESF graduate transcript (including current semester)
Request one copy of the SUNY-ESF transcript from the College Registrar
- Undergraduate transcript(s) (including transcripts for transfer credits)
Students must request original transcripts from their degree-granting institutions or submit legible copies of transcripts from transfer-credit institutions. Copies of official transcripts are acceptable, but web-based print-outs of unofficial transcripts are NOT acceptable.
- Resume or curriculum vita
- Budget justification page
Describe how the total request was calculated, NOT how the money will be spent. Sussman will not accept proposals that request funds for travel, accommodations, supplies, or fees. Typically this request is calculated in terms of an hourly rate ($/hour), then considering number hours to be dedicated per week or per task, and ultimately the total amount of hours and funds necessary for the duration of the internship.
Process and Deadlines
6 December 2013
|Digital version (MS Word file attachment to email) of final reports due from Sussman 2013 Interns - send to firstname.lastname@example.org by 11:59pm. Please use formatting consistent with previous Sussman reports in the archive below.|
Request copies of all official undergraduate and graduate transcripts sent to 227 Bray Hall, ATTN: Edna Bailey Sussman Foundation. Meet with host organization to discuss and confirm internship. Solicit letters of support from advisor and supervisor.
Wednesday, January 15 2014
Informational Meeting, 12:45pm, 217 Bray Hall (download presentation)
Dean Scott Shannon is the Sussman representative for SUNY ESF. Please direct questions to his attention.
Monday,27 January 2014
|One (1) hard copy, and one (1) digital copy of the complete application due to Dean Scott Shannon, 227 Bray Hall. (e-mail: email@example.com)|
28 January -21 February 2014
|Campus review of Sussman proposals and notification of proposal revisions to applicants by e-mail.|
|End of April 2013||Internship Award decisions made by Sussman Trustees. Applicants notified by e-mail|
5 December 2014
|Final reports due from 2013 Sussman Interns (submitted as MS Word docs via e-mail)|
Interns must submit a digital copy of a final report to the Sussman Fund by the deadline at the end of the semester following the internship. A lengthy final report is unnecessary -- generally 3-5 pages are sufficient. 2014 Sussman internship reports will be posted below on the ESF Sussman website in December 2014.
Sussman Internship applications are reviewed first by a campus committee chaired by the Dean of the Graduate School and including up to 4 faculty who have supervised past Sussman Interns. This review process results in narrowing the number of proposals from 25-35 or more, to 10-12 to be forwarded as official ESF nominations to the Sussman Foundation Trustees. All final decisions regarding internship awards are made by the Sussman Trustees.
Criteria for Campus Evaluation
- Completeness of application
Are all required materials complete and with original signatures?
- Cover page
Are the objectives clear and reasonable? [Objectives are measurable, precise, tangible statements. Goals are general intentions -- do not confuse the goal of the thesis/project with the objectives of the internship] Is the period of work specified and does it match the period indicated by the academic advisor and host supervisor?
- Quality of proposal
Proposals must be 500 words or less, demonstrate good command of the English language in the active verb tense. Proposals must be written for an educated lay-audience, not for scholarly publication or peer review (do not write like an NSF propsal!). Graduate students are expected to write to various audiences and explain in their own words the purpose of their research. If it is necessary and appropriate to include a citation, then the proposal is too technical. Above all, proposals should clearly state a central purpose and/or research hypothesis, followed by a concise work plan articulating the use of sound science, design, and/or best practices to address an environmental issue.
- Quality and strength of letter from Academic Advisor
[Faculty advisors must be full-time and eligible to serve as major professors at ESF – adjuncts and instructors are not eligible to serve as Sussman faculty advisors.]
- Quality and strength of letter from Host Organization
[Host must provide detailed support and evidence of direct supervision]
- Evidence of academic abilities especially in subject areas directly related to the proposed internship
[transcripts that show incomplete or failing grades, or evidence of academic or disciplinary action will not be considered]
- Reasonable duration of internship
[internships for a full-time, 14 week duration will be given priority.]
Remember, Sussman will not support work conducted at ESF, or its properties, or outside the US or its territories.
Past Internship Reports
2013 Internship Reports
- Ceili Bachman, "Water Level Regulation and Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands: How does regulation impact nutrient release and aquatic productivity?"
- Jenna Carlson, "Development of fine-scale and course-scale niche models for habitat distribution of North American moose (Alces alces) in the Adirondack Mountains."
- Anand Chaudary, "Avian and Plant Diversity of the Onondaga Lake Solvay Waste Beds, Syracuse, NY."
- Joelle Chille, "Repellency, Efficacy, and Persistence of Two Microbial Control Agents of an Asian Ambrosia Beetle and it’s Symbiotic Fungus."
- Thomas Evans, "Assessing the Distribution of Sea Lampreys (Petromyzon marinus) in the Hudson River Watershed."
- Danielle Hurley, "Comparison of Micropterus salmoides population characteristics between two basins Onondaga Lake, New York."
- Georgia Keene, “Conservation of the Karner Blue Butterfly at the Albany Pine Bush Preserve.”
- Stewart LePan, "Measuring Avian and Herptile Response to Wetland Enhancement in the St. Lawrence River Basin."
- Jay Wason, "Climate change impacts in high-elevation northeastern boreal forest plant communities."
- Yang Yang, "A Description of Nutrient Variability within Trees in Northern Hardwood Forest."
2012 Internship Reports
- Eric Bauer, "Invasive prey mediated enemy release hypothesis (trophic cascades of enemy release) in native smallmouth bass."
- Jessica Bouchard, "Assessing the Habitat Characteristics of the Fragrant Cliff Fern (D. fragrans L. Schott) inRegards to Climate Change and Recreational Land Use."
- Ella Braco, "An Island-wide Landscape Policy for Martha’s Vineyard."
- Elaina Burns, "Non-invasive Approach to River Otter Monitoring and Population Estimation in the Finger Lakes."
- Maureen Durkin, "Distribution And Dispersal Of Snowy Plovers In Florida During The Breeding And Post-Breeding Period."
- BettyJo Jivoff, "Limiting Factors in the Establishment of Marl Fen Vegetation on Calcareous Substrates at the Great Swamp Conservancy."
- Brent Johnson, "Assessing the potential of habitat manipulations as a conservation strategy for eastern
massasauga rattlesnakes, Sistrurus catenatus catenatus."
- Matt Regan, "Restoring the plant diversity of freshwater wetlands of the Upper St. Lawrence River."
- Craig See, "The grass is always greener: Nitrogen processes in lawns and adjacent forest land in the White Mountains, New Hampshire."
- Rebecca Walling, "The Effect of Invasive Earthworms on Ectomycorrhizal Diversity and Nutrient Cycling."
- Kenneth Chad Walz, "Understanding the Effect of Common Pharmaceuticals on Aquatic Organisms in Urban Waterbodies [Onondaga Lake, NY]."
- Jennifer Yantachka, "Forest Songbird Communities in the Adirondacks: Investigating Effects of Calcium Availability and Field-Testing an Automated Monitoring System."
2011 Internship Reports
- James Arrigoni, "Quantifying and improving restoration success: ecological metrics of constructed vernal pools"
- Andrew Brainard, "Urbanization and Aquatic Invasions: Can Invasion Success be Predicated by Evaluating Anthropogenic Actions?"
- Thomas Brumbelow, "Census of American hartʼs tongue fern in central New York"
- Shannon Buckley, "A Multi-Scale Study of Rusty Blackbirds, Nest Predation and Timber Management in the Northeast"
- Frances More Delaney, "Effects of fire on invasive species occupying alvar communities"
- Kalie Gerrenser, "Potential Impacts of Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis) on Plant Community and Biomass Dynamics in Mature Ash Forests in New York Great Lakes Basin State Parks"
- Brian Henning, "Evaluating the near-shore fish community response to restored habitat connectivity in robust cattail marshes of the upper St. Lawrence River"
- Emily Johnson, "Guyette Farm Comprehensive Management Plan: Internship with the Franklin Land Trust"
- Catherine Landis, "Investigating the historical ecology of Onondaga Lake"
- Karun Pandit, "An analysis of growth prediction of forest attributes using Forest Vegetation Simulator (FVS)"
- Juliana Quant, "Forest communities along soil, acid deposition, and climate gradients of the Appalachian Trail"
- Sarah Wilkinson, "Dynamics of un-managed deer populations: database organization and auditing for the National Park Service"
2010 Internship Reports
- Meredith Atwood, "Bottom-Up Influences in Vernal Pools: Implications for Amphibians and Vernal Pool Restoration Efforts"
- Stephanie Figary, "Investigating the impact of an invasive zooplankton, Cercopagis pengoi, on the food webs of the New York Finger Lakes"
- Jacob Gilette, Creating a Predictive Model of Toxic and Non-Toxic Mixotrophic Algal Bloom Formation in US Surface Waters: An Internship with the Michigan State University-Kellogg Biological Field Station
- Sara Hansen, "Estimation of Eastern Coyote abundance through distance sampling and vocalization surveys"
- Warren Hellman, "Using the Native Wasp, Cerceris fumipennis, to Monitor for Invasive Beetle Species"
- Megan Kirchgessner, "Interspecies Transmission of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus and Coxiella burnetii: Prevalence, Distribution, and Spatial Epidemiology in White-Tailed Deer in the Northeastern United States"
- Courtney LaMere, "Effect of Variable Mast Production on American Black Bear Reproduction and Bear-Human Conflict in the Central Adirondack Mountains"
- Abigail Larkin, "Adirondack Stakeholder Wilderness Perceptions for Use in Wilderness Preservation"
- Carrie Rose Lavine, "Development of an inelastic neutron scattering approach to assess carbon and nitrogen contents of forest soils: an internship with the Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton NY"
- Portia Osborne, "Monitoring the effects of disturbance on old-field plant communities in Central New York: Applications to management of a rare snake"
- Michelle Peach, "The Effectiveness of Protected Lands at Maintaining Avian Biodiversity Over Time"
2009 Internship Reports
- Daniele Baker, "The Effect of Changing Nitrogen Pollution on Phytoplankton Communities in an Urban Lake"
- Brandeis L. Brown, "Using Field Experimentation to Assess Recovery of the Benthic Macroinvertebrate Community in Onondaga Lake, NY"
- Catherine Haase, "Creating a Public Moose Observation Database for the Adirondack State Park"
- Joseph Gawronski-Salerno, "Investigating invasive pressure from European swallow-wort (Cynanchum rossicum) on the rare American hart's-tongue fern (Asplenium scolopendrium var. americanum)"
- Jaime Jones, "Influences on Vascular Plant Communities in Created and Natural Vernal Pools of the Northeastern United States"
- Kevin E. Jablonski, "Habitat Associations of Adirondack lowland Boreal Birds"
- Andrew Myers, "Bog Turtle Microhabitat Selection"
- Patrick A. Raney, "Climatic Buffering in Temperate Zone Fens, Implications for Climate Change"
- Michelle Serapiglia, "Development of a Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Method to Determine Cellulose, Hemicellulose, and Lignin Content in Shrub Willow Biomass"
- Caitlin M. Snyder, "Non-native Earthworms as Agents of Forest Change in the Adirondack Park
- Madeline Turnquist, "Creating a Predictive Spatial Model to Determine the Locations of High Aquatic Mercury Levels in New York"
- Brigham Whitman, "White-Tailed Deer Ranging Behavior in Central New York with Implications for Disease Spread"
2008 Internship Reports
- Phillip Barber, "Aquatic Insect Communities in Central New York Rivers"
- Christina Boser, "A Model to Describe Coyote Diet Selection"
- Virginia Collins, "Catch the Nature Bug"
- Brittany Cronk, "Distribution and Ecology of the Fungal Pathogen of Dicranum fulvum"
- Amanda Dillon, "A Census and Study on Habitat Preference of Solitary Bees and Wasps in Central New York"
- Michael Fishman, "Summer Habitat Selection of the Endangered Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis) In Central New York"
- Lisa Kurian,"Informing Existing Environmental Problems through Hydrology Research: An Internship With the Takshanuk Watershed Council"
- Brienne Meyer, "Metallic Element Accumulation in Adirondack Mycorrhizal and Saprobic Macromycetes (Fungi) in Relation to Soil Characteristics"
- Sam Quinn, "Factors Influencing the Distribution of Eastern Hellbenders in the Susquehanna River Watershed of New York State"
- Jason Townsend, "Mercury in Terrestrial Environments: A Large-Scale Assessment of Bioaccumulation and Food Web Transfer In Three Habitat-Specialist Songbirds"