Julia Buskirk, a Conservation Biology and English double major, has just been awarded a Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Fellowship. Hilldale Fellowships are awarded based on the significance of the proposed project, the student’s intellectual contribution, and the degree of meaningful collaboration with a research mentor.
In her project “The Story of Lake Mendota,” Buskirk asks two important questions about a body of water we often take for granted: What do extensive scientific studies of Lake Mendota—believed by many to be the most studied lake in the world—reveal about the story of human life along the shore and its impacts on the aquatic ecosystem? And how can this story best reach an audience outside of academic circles?
Buskirk’s faculty mentor for the award is Holding History’s co-director, Associate Professor Joshua Calhoun. Of the accomplishment, Calhoun remarks that “Buskirk’s project is engaging, ambitious, and innovative in the ways that it explores Lake Mendota as a kind of library archive.”
At the heart of the project is a commitment to public-facing science writing. So as Buskirk’s research progresses this summer, she will be writing a blog series for Holding History’s Bookish Blog. Click here to read more about Water Lines and to see Buskirk’s first biweekly post.