News & Awards

Below is a collection of accomplishments by OSU water faculty and students. These items are also posted in H2OSU, the weekly campus water newsletter. To add to this list, please email


OSU’s Student Chapter of Engineers Without Borders Receives "Outstanding Chapter" Award (11/22/2010)

Oregon State University's student chapter of Engineers Without Borders was awarded a $2000 "Outstanding Chapter Award" at the West Coast Regional Workshop this October, for their ingenuity and contribution to local water catchment systems in rural communities in El Salvador and Kenya. EWB strives to improve the lives of others worldwide by using sustainable engineering and appropriate technology to promote community ownership and development in rural communities.

Read more about the chapter on their website.

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IWW welcomes Dr. Martin Schroth as a distinguished fellow (11/16/2010)

The IWW is pleased to welcome Dr. Martin Schroth, Professor of Environmental Sciences at ETH Zurich, to the OSU campus as an IWW visiting fellow.  Dr. Schroth specializes in the development and application of novel methods for the assessment of microbial processes at the field scale. His current research activities focus on the quantification of microbial
processes involved in greenhouse-gas turnover in soils, with particular emphasis on microbially mediated methane oxidation.

Dr. Schroth is working with Professor John Selker and team on distributed temperature sensing using fiber-optic cables to obtain high resolution wind-speed and soil-moisture data for various environmental

Dr. Schroth will present a public seminar on Tuesday November 30, 4-5 p.m. on Microbial Methane Oxidation in Terrestrial Systems.

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OSU-UO Graduate their first JD-MS in Water Resources (11/08/2010)

Jennifer Holderman will be OSU’s first graduate of the concurrent JD-MS in Water Resources, a program possible through a partnership with University of Oregon’s law school.  Congratulations, Jennifer!  Read about her on page 16 of the UO Environmental and Natural Resources Law newsletter.

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IWW welcomes Dr. Tim Burt as a distinguished fellow (09/27/2010)

Dr. Tim Burt is Master of Hatfield College and Professor of Geography at Durham University, UK. He has been researching aspects of hydrology, geomorphology and climate change since the mid-1970s. While at OSU he will be working with Professor Jeff McDonnell on a range of topics including the analysis of long-term hydrological data from the H J Andrews watersheds and a textbook on hillslope hydrology. He also hopes to complete analysis of some long (many decades) records of nitrate concentrations in English rivers and his compilation of daily rainfall data from the 1820s for the Radcliffe Observatory at Oxford University, possibly the longest such record in existence.

Please come and meet Dr. Burt when he gives a seminar on Friday, October 29.  The seminar is titled Long-term monitoring of nitrate - implications for science, policy and management .

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IWW welcomes Dr. Greg Hancock as a distinguished fellow (09/27/2010)

Dr. Greg Hancock is an Associate Professor and Head of Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Newcastle, Australia. His research interests are in the long-term dynamics of geomorphic systems and the interactions between landscape geomorphology, hydrology and erosion. He has extensively tested and used soil erosion and landform evolution models for both theoretical and applied situations such as mine sites. Greg is working with Professor Jeff McDonnell and team examining the sediment transport and landscape stability of mine sites in the USA. He is also examining the role of catastrophic events such as hurricanes and consequences such as tree-throw in altering hydrology and geomorphology and triggering landscape change.

Greg will present a seminar on October 26 (noon) in Richardson, 107, Rebuilding disturbed landscapes - How computer models can aid environmental rehabilitation.

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Jeff McDonnell named the 2011 Birdsall Dreiss Distinguished Lecturer for the Geological Society of America (09/13/2010)

As a recipient of this lectureship, Dr. Jeff McDonnell, director of the IWW and Richardson Chair in Watershed Science, will travel to different university campuses and give lectures on two topics: "Where does water go when it rains? Conceptualizing runoff processes in headwater catchments." and "Isotope tracers in catchment hydrology: How far can we go?". Universities or other institutions wishing to host a Birdsall-Dreiss lecture apply through the GSA website

The Birdsall Lectureship began in 1978, as part of a bequest left to the Geological Society of America – Hydrogeology Division in memory of John Manning Birdsall.  It was later expanded to honor the memory of Dr. Shirley Dreiss from the University of California – Santa Cruz. The Birdsall-Dreiss Lecturer is chosen each year by a panel of former lecturers. There are no applications for this position and they make their choice solely on the reputation of perspective candidates for their research excellence and ability to communicate. -- excerpt from the GSA website

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Two Oregon State Students Receive Fulbright Scholarships (08/17/2010)

Hathai Sangsupan, a graduate student in forest science, will travel to Thailand to study ecology and environmental issues. Arthur Bass, a graduate student in fisheries studies, will travel to Norway to study biology.

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Christoph Thomas Receives NSF CAREER Award (06/30/2010)

Christoph Thomas received a prestigious CAREER award from National Science Foundation to work on "A new direction into atmospheric near-surface transport for weak-wind conditions in plant canopies". The project will study how air moves in plant canopies such as crops and forests where winds are usually relatively weak, and how it affects the transport of heat, water and momentum. The level of scientific understanding of weak-wind transport is very limited, and commonly used forecast tools and mathematical formulations don't apply.

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Water Resources Graduate Program Announces 2010 Award Recipients (05/26/2010)

The OSU Water Resources Graduate Program (WRGP) held its annual awards day on Wednesday, May 26. Mary Santelmann, the program director and the entire OSU water community extend a warm congratulations to this year's award recipients:

  • Kelly Kibler (Water Resource Engineering) received the Williamson Water Prize, a $500 prize for academic excellence and the WRGP's most prestigious award. Kelly is working on a large, interdisciplinary study of the impacts of dams, focusing on southern China, and received multiple nominations. One nomination for Kelly said, "…She really is phenomenal. Already, she has gotten two of her own papers accepted, contributed to another that is in press, and has 4 more in the works. She is living in China right now, facilitating a complex project with great success. She has [also] directed the Engineers Without Borders project in El Salvador…” 

  • Bridget Brown (Water Resource Policy and Management) received the Water Resources Faculty Excellence Award, a $500 prize given for "representing OSU through publication of a paper, giving an oral presentation, or presenting a poster that helps to showcase the leadership of the WRGP program". Her nomination letter notes that, “Bridget has taken the lead in writing up a complex, multi-investigator study on assessing water governance in five North African and Middle Eastern countries, and in managing the research team that is developing this complicated effort, including five faculty members, up to ten students, all of different disciplines, as well as working with NACSE to develop a bilingual web-distribution and database site.  Her presentations at an AWRA meeting in Seattle and an IID meeting in Delhi were stellar.”

  • Abigail Brown (Water Resources Policy and Management) and Terry Frueh (Water Resources Engineering) received the Water Resources Alumni Award ($250 each) for leadership and service to the water resources community as well as in their field of study. Abby and Terry have done excellent work for the Hydrophiles community this year as webmaster and president including assisting with the seminars and with the mentoring program, as well as the usual Hydrophiles officer duties.

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Dr. Roy Haggerty Named Hollis M. Dole Professor in Environmental Geology (05/24/2010)

Dr. Roy Haggerty (Geosciences) has been named the first recipient of the Hollis M. Dole Professorship in Environmental Geology at Oregon State University! An installation ceremony was held on Friday, May 21 with more than 60 colleagues, current and past students, friends and family members attending.

Dr. Haggerty has been an integral part of the OSU water community since 1996 teaching groundwater geology and flow modeling courses, and leading research projects on hyporheic flow, nitrate transport, and other groundwater geology topics. His insight and collaborative work style is appreciated by colleagues and students alike - the OSU Water Community extends a warm congratulations to him on this well-deserved honor!

THe Hollis M. Dole Professorship in Environmental Geology honors the distinguished OSU alumnus whose career included appointments as Oregon State Geologist and as Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Mineral Resources. He was instrumental in writing the rules and regulations for offshore drilling for oil and gas in the coastal areas of Oregon before other states had such regulations.

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