Michael Ziegler – National Science Foundation Research Grant

Talking points:

  • Michael Ziegler, an environmental science major in the Department of Biological and Environmental Science, has been awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship to participate in research in Africa for the summer of 2016.
  • Ziegler will join a group of researchers from George Washington University at the Koobi Fora Field School in Kenya. In collaboration with other team members including Georgia College alumnus David Patterson, his research will involve aspects of modern and fossil ecology.
  • In the modern component, he will be investigating the relationship between modern vegetation and large ungulate distributions at Mpala Conservancy on the Laikipia Plateau of central Kenya. At Koobi Fora, he will be using large mammal fossils as well as fossil soils to better understand paleoecosystem variability between 2 and 1.4 million years ago. This will serve as the foundation for testing hypotheses related to hominin landuse and the ecological drivers of major hominin adaptations during this period.
  • The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based Master’s and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions. They received nearly 17,000 applications and made 2,000 award offers in 2016.

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