GeoCUR 2016 Undergraduate Research Mentor Award — Wendy Bohrson

Wendy Borhrson

Wendy Bohrson, Professor of Geological Sciences at Central Washington University (USA), has been awarded the 2016 Undergraduate Research Mentor Award by the Geoscience Division of the Council on Undergraduate Research (GeoCUR). This annual award recognizes not only exceptional ability in maintaining good student–faculty relations but also in developing innovative approaches to undergraduate-level research.

In his citation in support of Wendy for this award (paraphrased below), Professor Erin Kraal (Kutztown University, USA) wrote:

Wendy Bohrson has engaged undergraduates in research since 1999, by working with individuals and by transforming university culture. Over 25 undergraduates have worked with Bohrson on her research to understand the evolution of magma chambers and young volcanoes. She is described as giving the “most caring, patient, meticulous, and beneficial advising any undergraduate could possible ask for” balancing her approachability and careful guidance with “rigor, scientific integrity, and work ethic.” This commitment and devotion has brought about deep respect from her students. Bohrson’s undergraduate research students regularly win presentation awards at regional and national meetings and have met success post baccalaureate.

Bohrson is a “leader of undergraduate research at the university level.” She was the director of both the Office of Undergraduate Research as well as the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded Science Talent Expansion Program (STEP). She tirelessly worked to transition the STEP mentored research ‘bridging program’ to become a permanent part of the university curriculum. Her colleagues note that even while focusing on administrative duties, Bohrson maintained a vibrant research group, where “a student can succeed and experience research at a level suited to their ability.” She is known as a “role model for productive and transformative faculty-student mentoring relationships.”