News & Events


March 15, 2016 | News

UGA research will help policymakers plan for sea level rise

A new study by University of Georgia researchers could help protect more than 13 million American homes that will be threatened by rising sea levels by the end of the century.

March 14, 2016 | News



Our undergraduate and graduate students have received numerous, deserved honors…

Undergraduate Ray Paleg, who was recently featured on the UGA website as an “Amazing Student,” was a NASA Environmental Studies Education intern working with their Earth Science Watershed Teacher Summer Institutes. Ray has also been an intern making our rooftop even greener. She will soon graduate and begin a job as a recruiting coordinator at Google.

Undergraduate Jessica Wolfe was invited to Phi Beta Kappa in December.

Castle Williams received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship last spring. Belated congrats, Castle!

Dean Hardy received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement (DDRI) grant for his work “Mapping Uneven & Alternative Social Vulnerabilities to Sea-Level Rise on the Georgia Coast.” Dean also received the Jeanne X. Kasperson Student Paper Award from the Hazards, Risks, and Disasters Specialty Group of AAG. Finally, he also received a grant from the Center for Research & Engagement in Diversity at UGA.

Claire Bolton received an NSF DDRI for her work “Faith-Based Organizations, Race and Community Development Christian Community Development Association.”

Danielle Haskett received a grant from the National Park Service to support her doctoral work in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Matt Hauer was named a Florida State University “Notable Nole” (formerly Top 30 Under 30). He also won best poster at the Southeastern Climate Consortium. Finally, Matt had an important paper on sea level rise just accepted to one of most visible journals in science, Nature Climate Change.

Shuvankar Ghosh received a Graduate School Dean’s Award for his doctoral research.

While our WxChallenge national weather forecast contest team had a number of successes over the past several years, perhaps most impressive was when Jordan McLeod took home the top prize as the nations best forecaster in spring 2015, beating out 2000 participants ranging from undergraduates to faculty across the U.S. and Canada.

Craig Ramseyer won First Place Poster Presentation at the American Meteorological Society (AMS) 28th Conference on Climate Variability and Change for his work “Historical Caribbean Synoptic types and Downscaling to Northeast Puerto Rico Precipitation Variability using Self-Organizing Maps.”

Paul Miller won First Place Oral Presentation at the AMS 11th Symposium on Societal Applications: Policy, Research, and Practice for his work “Applications of the Term ‘Pulse’ as a Thunderstorm Mode Descriptor.”

Castle Williams won Third Place Oral Presentation at the AMS 11th Symposium on Societal Applications: Policy, Research, and Practice for his work, “Throwing Caution to the Wind: National Weather Service Wind Products as Perceived by a Weather-Savvy Public” and an Oral Presentation Award at the AMS Board on Environment and Health Conference for “Turning up the Heat on Parents and Caregivers: Risk Perceptions of Forgetting a Child in a Hot Car.”

Emily Castellucci won the National Association of Geoscience Teachers Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award.

Mingshu Wang and Brian Williams were selected for the UGA-Liverpool graduate exchange program this fall.

Genevieve Holdridge received an Office of Service Learning mini-grant for her innovative curriculum in GEOG 1111L. Madeleine Breza received an Office of Service Learning grant for her work on the rooftop garden with Amy Trauger. Xuan Zhang received a Campus Sustainability grant for her work on “A More Walkable UGA.”

Gretchen Sneegas received an Innovative and Interdisciplinary Award over the summer.

Our faculty have been making an impact in the discipline and around the world…

Andy Herod was reappointed as a Distinguished Research Professor, and Marshall Shepherd was “elevated” from a Georgia Athletic Association Professor to a Georgia Athletic Association Distinguished Professor.

Marshall Shepherd has had several invitations to Washington, including to the White House for “Champions of Change” in climate education. He was named a 2015 Grad Made Good by Florida State University and was asked to serve as a commencement speaker this year! Marshall was also part of a team that received the NASA Agency Group Achievement Award for the Global Precipitation Mission. He was an invited participant by the AAAS as the keynote speaker on their symposium on climate change in the fall. He has been serving on the National Academies of Science Committee on Extreme Weather Events and Climate Change Attribution. Marshall joined Forbes magazine as a regular contributor, appeared on CBS Face the Nation, was part of an NBC Learn program on natural hazards, and continues to host his weekly WxGeeks program on the Weather Channel.

Amy Trauger has received a Study in a Second Discipline in the College of Public Health next year for her project “Agricultural Chemicals and Human Health: Exposure and Risk in North-Central Minnesota.”

Amy Ross has received a Willson Center fellowship for her project “Civilian Causalities in Battle: Identifying Innocents in Contemporary Conflicts.”

Hilda Kurtz was named an inaugural Special Collection Libraries Fellow this year.

Fausto Sarmiento was selected for the Faculty Development Workshop on Integrating Sustainability in the Curriculum and was a finalist for the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award. He is an online learning fellow this semester. Fausto was also named to the publications committee of the World Commission on Protected Areas.

Mu Lan is the new chair of the ISPRS Working Group on “Geosensor Networks and the Internet of Things.”

Jerry Shannon was named a Service-Learning Fellow for this academic year. Jerry’s work on food deserts was featured by the London School of Economics on their American Politics and Policy blog.

Suzie Birch received funding through the Sarah Moss Scholarship for one of her many travels.

Here are a few items I shared from SEDAAG and AAG, but are worth repeating…

Pete Akers received the best paper award for a doctoral student at SEDAAG for his presentation “Severe Dry Events and Precipitation Seasonality Changes in the American Midwest During the Holocene: Evidence From Multiple Proxies in a Southern Indiana Stalagmite Calibrated with Modern Precipitation Isotopes.”

Deepak Mishra received the Research Honors Award, and Kavita Pandit received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the SEDAAG meeting in Pensacola. Kavita will also receive the Ronald F. Abler Distinguished Service Honors at the upcoming AAG annual meeting in San Francisco.

Hilda Kurtz won election to the AAG Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee determines the candidates for President, Vice President and National Councillors.

Nik Heynen has been selected by the AAG Council as the People, Place, and Region editor for the Annals of the AAG.

Our faculty also have several new grants awarded in the past several months…

Marguerite Madden has received new funding from the National Park Service on “Keeping the Promise: Planning the Future of the Blue Ridge Parkway.” David Leigh and Carson Pruitt have received a grant from the Phinizy Center for Water Resources on “Sediment Transport and Stormflow Shear Stress in a Highly Urbanized Stream.” Deepak Mishra and collaborators have received funding for the student-led CubeSat project from the U.S. Air Force, and they have a much larger NASA proposal pending. Deepak also has a new Sea Grant project underway.Marshall Shepherd has a new NASA grant titled “The Energy-Water-Food Nexus Within the Backdrop of an Urbanized Globe: How Can GPM Help?” Jerry Shannon is investigator on a USDA grant to study Georgia’s community revitalization needs. Hilda Kurtz and Deepak Mishra also have new grants that have arrived so recently that I don’t have complete information.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we have several doctoral students who have accepted new positions…

Richard Milligan recently accepted a tenure-track Assistant Professor position at Georgia State University. Emily Castellucci accepted a renewable Senior Lecturer position at Ohio State University, and Craig Ramseyer accepted a tenure-track Assistant Professor position at Salisbury University. Last spring, Ujjaini Das has accepted a tenure-track Assistant Professor position at Cottey College in Missouri.

Brian Williams received a National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement grant for his project "Bioaccumulating Agrarian Racism: The Environmental Politics of Pesticides in the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta."

Caren Remillard and Marguerite Madden participated in making a NASA DEVELOP video for International Women's Day (

Xuebin Wei accepted a tenure-track Assistant Professor position at James Madison University. He was a visiting assistant professor there last year and the new position will start in Fall 2016.

Again, please join me in sharing congratulations with these deserving individuals! Please don’t hesitate to let me know if I missed something important!

March 7, 2016 | News

What Is The ‘Maya Express’ And Will It Cause Flooding U.S. Rains This Week?

Recent discussions centered on a paper that suggested the “Nashville Floods of 2010″ were partially linked to an atmospheric river that supplied moisture from the tropical Eastern Pacific and the Caribbean.

March 4, 2016 | News

Trees vital to improving stream quality, UGA Student finds

Want better streams? Plant some trees, according to a University of Georgia study.

March 4, 2016 | News

Geography major Ray Paleg chosen as amazing student on UGA Today

The geography major says her “undergraduate experience has been filled with adventure, growth and making memories with the people I love.”

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