The Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute has awarded grants to twelve University of Nebraska-Lincoln faculty to provide assistantships to graduate students working on projects that contribute to a more water and food secure world.
The grants program supports interdisciplinary faculty research while enriching the education of students who will one day be scientific leaders in the effort to feed the world’s growing population with limited natural resources. The one-year grants, which include matching funds from the institute’s faculty fellows, total $199,062 and will support the research of six graduate and six doctoral students during the 2017-2018 fiscal year. The projects range from the movement of Uranium in Nebraska’s groundwater to the empowerment of smallholder farmers in Haiti.
“Education is an essential part of the institute’s mission, said Christopher Neale, director of research. “We are excited to start the fourth year of our student support program and help faculty and their students pursue projects that will advance the University of Nebraska’s efforts to provide solutions for global water and food security.”
Faculty from eight University of Nebraska-Lincoln departments received awards:
- Stephen Baenziger, professor and Wheat Growers Presidential Chair, UNL agronomy and horticulture, for the project: Genetic Architecture of Male Traits for Hybrid Wheat Seed Production. PhD student: Nicholas Garst.
- Yufeng Ge, assistant professor, UNL Biological Systems Engineering, for the project: Integrated Crop and Soil Water Sensor Network to Assist UAS and Soil Water Simulation Modeling in Variable Rate Irrigation. PhD student: To be recruited.
- James Goedert, professor, UNL Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction, for the project: Growing Haiti. PhD student: Khandakar M. Rashid.
- Jesse Korus, assistant professor, UNL School of Natural Resources, for the project: Improving Groundwater Characterization and Management through Integration of Airborne Electromagnetics (AEM) and Borehole Data. Masters student: Jaqueline Polashek.
- Xu Li, associate professor, UNL Civil Engineering, for the project: Determination of Setback Distance Requirements for Reducing Contaminants in Agricultural Runoff Following the Land Application of Swine Manure Slurry. Masters student: Maria Cecilia Hall.
- Yusong Li, associate professor, UNL Civil Engineering, for the project: Influence of Climate and Agricultural Clustering on Groundwater Contamination by Trace Organics. PhD student: Chuyang Liu.
- Adam Liska, associate professor, George Dempster Smith Chair of Industrial Ecology, UNL Biological Systems Engineering, for the project: Livestock Thermodynamics & Agricultural Energy Productivity Gaps in Sub-Saharan Africa. Masters student: Calvin Harman.
- Taro Mieno, assistant professor, UNL Agricultural Economics, for the project: Farmer Adaptation to Low Well Yields in High-productivity Irrigated Agriculture. Masters student: Paloch Suchato.
- James Schnable, assistant professor, UNL Agronomy and Horticulture, for the project: Optimizing the Water Use Efficiency of C4 Grain Crops Using Comparative Phenomics and Crop Models to Guide Breeding Targets. PhD student: Daniel Santana de Carvalho.
- Karina Schoengold, associate professor, UNL Agricultural Economics, for the project: The Effects of Institutions and Hydrological Conditions on Optimal Management of a Shared Aquifer: a case study of the High Plains. Masters student: To be recruited.
- Bing Wang, assistant professor, UNL Food Science and Technology, for the project: Energy-Water Conservation and Wastewater Reclamation in a Milk Processing Facility. Masters student: CarlyRain Adams.
- Karrie Weber, associate professor, UNL Biological Sciences and Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, for the project: Mobilization of Naturally Occurring Uranium into Groundwater. PhD student: Jeffrey Westrop.