Springfield, Ohio — The science departments at Wittenberg University are preparing to welcome hundreds of Ohio scientists, including high school and college students, faculty members and other interested persons, to the 118th annual meeting of The Ohio Academy of Science on Friday and Saturday, April 17 and 18. The event marks the first time Wittenberg has hosted the meeting, which will be held in its state-of-the-art science facility, the Barbara Deer Kuss Science Center, 315 Bill Edwards Drive.
Wittenberg Professor of Biology Horton H. Hobbs III is the current president of the organization, and although The Ohio Academy of Science Board of Trustees' meeting and its annual business meeting are scheduled for members only, a variety of activities for the students and guests have been planned.
On Friday, Wittenberg faculty members will lead participants on field trips to nearby areas of scientific interest. Assistant Professor of Biology Charlie Kwit will lead a trip to “Southwest Ohio's Canyonland,” (Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve, John Bryan State Park and/or Glen Helen Nature Preserve), while Professor of Biology Tim Lewis will explore “Cedar Bog State Memorial” with meeting participants. “Passive Stream Restoration Using Recent Stream Channel and Pattern Changes,” led by Professor of Geology John Ritter and Assistant Professor of Geology Mike Zaleha, is another option for participants to consider. The field trips will take place rain or shine.
The All-Academy Lecture, a highlight of the event, begins at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, April 18, in Bayley Auditorium at Kuss Science Center. The keynote speaker is Craig M. Young, University of Oregon, and is titled “The Invertebrate Zoology of Darwin: Zoophytes, Barnacles, Corals, and Worms.” The lecture is free and open to the public.
Young's specialty is the reproduction and larval biology of invertebrates, particularly in the deep sea, and he and his students have worked on most of the animal phyla. He has visited the sea floor in eight different submersibles on more than 70 scientific cruises. His laboratory was also the first to rear the embryos and larvae of giant deep-sea tubeworms from cold methane seeps and hydrothermal vents. The lecture is sponsored by Wittenberg's Faculty Endowment Fund Board and the Departments of Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Math and Computer Science, and Physics.
Podium sessions that include discussions on a variety of research projects in aquatic biology, education and health, environmental science, and biochemistry and biology are scheduled on Saturday morning.
Saturday also features poster sessions, which give students the opportunity to present their research and to see the work of the other participants. Sessions by college students who have conducted research with faculty in aquatic biology, biology, and ecology and insects are among the sessions expected to be held throughout the day. A pre-college poster session of research projects by high school students and their faculty advisers also takes place from 1-3 p.m.
The poster sessions demonstrate the variety of research being conducted in Ohio by both college and high school students and their faculty advisers. Wittenberg has more than 50 students currently engaged in faculty-student research projects who will be participating in the event.
Written By: Phyllis Eberts