Research Projects by Subject
Note: Each research project will involve background reading for the interns provided by their mentors. Each research project will involve a final presentation by the interns.
Interns are expected to work collaboratively on the same project and/or data set. This may preclude rising seniors from submitting papers based on such projects to the Intel Science Talent Search competition.
|Code||Research Project Descriptions|
Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Urban Gardens
Primary mentor: Monika Egerer
Faculty advisor: Prof. Stacy Philpott
Location: UCSC Main Campus
Number of interns: 2
Project description: Insect biodiversity is crucial for maintaining ecosystem services, or benefits that humans derive from natural processes, in agro-ecosystems (i.e., ecosystems managed for crop production). The main objectives of the mentor's research group's research project is to explore how ecosystem services are affected by changes in insect biodiversity and local habitat complexity in urban garden ecosystems. The mentor's research group seeks to understand how changes in insect communities may lead to changes in ecosystem functions and services. The mentor's research group focuses on pollinators and insect predators, both of which are especially important in agriculture for pollination and pest control services.
Tasks: The SIP interns will participate in field work and participate in lab work. The interns will identify insects and plants to species observed in the field, and identify the important traits that they have to categorize insect samples. This information will be used to: (1) inform data analysis common in community ecology, and (2) create an informational guide to publish on the mentor's research group's website. Second, the SIP interns will have the opportunity to assist with a participatory research project involving multiple gardens and gardeners, in which the gardeners' water use over the summer will be measured. URL: http://ucscgardenresearch.weebly.com/ Required skills for interns prior to acceptance: None
Skills intern(s) will acquire/hone: Lab work; statistical data analysis; field work
Special age requirement: The applicant must be 16 years old by June 12, 2017.