Yosemite Summer Students in Public Symposium Aug. 15

MERCED - The University of California, Merced, and Yosemite National Park have hosted nineteen students from UC Merced and other institutions around the United States in two programs in the park this summer.

As the students finish their summer experience, they will share the knowledge they have gained in a public symposium Aug. 15 from 8:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Search and Rescue Training Room in Yosemite Valley. (Directions are included at the end of this document.)

"Anybody is welcome to attend the whole day of presentations or stop in for the topics that interest them," said UC Merced Wawona Research StationDirector Eric L. Berlow.

The schedule of presentations is as follows:

Morning Session: Yosemite Leadership Program

8:45 - 9:00 Introduction (Eric Berlow, UC Merced Sierra Nevada Research Institute)

9:00 - 9:15 Marie Armstrong (University of California, Merced)
"Through interpretation comes stewardship: Keystone connections between UC Merced and Yosemite"

9:15 - 9:30 Gesha Uminskiy (University of California, Merced)
"Giardia in the Sierra Nevada: What do we know?"

9:30 - 9:45 Orion Agnew (University of California, Merced)
"Yosemite's soundscape: Noise and neurological well-being"

9:45 - 10:00 Jeannette Barron (University of California, Merced)
"Behind the scenes of an archeological site in Yosemite National Park: What it takes to do a dig"

10:00 - 10:15 Money Hothi (University of California, Merced)
"Nutritional influence on peak performance in mountaineering sports"

10:15 - 10:30 Break

10:30 - 10:45 Zander Kurnizki (University of California, Merced)
"Human hydration: how I stopped worrying and learned to love the filter"

10:45 - 11:00 Chris Hubach (University of California, Merced)
"Physiological effects of backpacking"

11:00 - 11:15 Renee Smith (University of California, Merced)
"The Invasion: Exotic vegetation in Yosemite National Park"

11:15 - 11:30 Yesi Medina (University of California, Merced)
"A wilderness state of mind"

11:30 - 11:45 Raj Bolla (University of California, Merced)
"Making a friend out of fire in the Sierra Nevada"

11:45 - 12:00 Alvaro Luna (University of California, Merced)
"Discovering the Southern Sierra Miwok Language"

12:00 - 1:15 Lunch Break

Afternoon Session: Research Experiences for Undergraduates program

1:15 - 1:30 Introduction (Benoit Dayrat, University of California, Merced)

1:30 - 1:50 Brenda Nieto (University of Texas, El Paso)
"Estimating meadow vulnerability to climate change"

1:50 - 2:10 Alejandro Miró Co (University of Puerto Rico)
"Environmental DNA barcoding of Yosemite freshwater invertebrates - Part 1: Survey of the Tuolumne and Merced watersheds diversity"

2:10 - 2:30 Cymphonee Robinson (University of California, Riverside)
"Environmental DNA barcoding of Yosemite freshwater invertebrates - Part 2: CO1 DNA sequences as an innovative tool for biodiversity assessment"

2:30 - 2:50 Break

2:50 - 3:10 Dannique Aalbu (University of California, Merced)
"The future of Sierra water: study and implications of ground water and surface water interactions in the upper Merced River"

3:10 - 3:30 Cliff Tonsberg (University of Tennessee)
"Flow paths in the South Fork of the Merced River, Yosemite National Park"

3:30 - 3:50 Nathan Helms (Columbia College)
"Instrument transect along Tioga Pass Road: a new paradigm for hydrologic and climate monitoring"

3:50 - 4:10 Break

4:10 - 4:30 Sunny Grunloh (University of California, Merced)
"Prescribed fire effects on surface soil and biomass carbon of Yosemite National Park forests"

4:30 - 4:50 Tevis Blom (University of Colorado)
"Atmospheric deposition of toxic metals in Yosemite National Park high altitude lakes: reconnaissance survey, summer 2008"

Parking and Directions
* Visitors should park in Day Use Parking and walk or use park shuttles to reach the SAR Training Room.
* Board the shuttle at stop 1 (Day Use Parking) and disembark at stop 5 (Visitor Center).
* Walk to Village Drive and make a right.
* Go past the stop sign into the employee parking lot and head to the gas pumps.
* Turn left into the lot between the SAR Training Room and the Wilderness Patrol/SAR Cache (located at 9000 Lost Arrow Drive).
* The SAR Training Room is on your right. If you get to the stables, you've gone too far.

For more information on UC Merced's summer programs in Yosemite National Park, visit http://www.ucmerced.edu/connection/.

UC Merced opened September 5, 2005 as the 10th campus in the University of California system and the first American research university of the 21st century. The campus significantly expands access to the UC system for students throughout the state, with a special mission to increase college-going rates among students in the San Joaquin Valley. It also serves as a major base of advanced research and as a stimulus to economic growth and diversification throughout the region. Situated near Yosemite National Park, the university is expected to grow rapidly, topping out at approximately 25,000 students within 30 years.

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