Graduate Student Symposium Success

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First LTER Graduate Student Collaborative Research Symposium Very Successful

The first LTER Graduate Student Collaborative Research Symposium was held on April 13th through the 17th at H. J. Andrews LTER, in Blue River, Oregon.

This symposium was created in order to facilitate future graduate student interaction and participation in the broader community of LTER scientists, as well as to stimulate graduate student engagement in comparative and collaborative research efforts.

There were a total of 66 graduate students representing 24 United States LTER sites and 11 students from international LTER sites (representing China, Mongolia, South Africa, Austria, Czech Republic, Brazil, Mexico and Switzerland). There were also 2 invited speakers (Dr. Whendee Silver and Dr. Scott Collins), 2 post-docs, 1 undergraduate, and multiple LTER information managers in attendance. Overall, there were 71 presentations (including LTER site review presentations and personal research presentations) and 13 training and collaborative workshops.

The workshops in addition to being very informative also sparked at least five long-term cross-site collaborations. These collaborations are using long-term datasets that are available from LTER sites and will be used for cross-site comparison and eventually appearing in peer-reviewed publications.

The most rewarding aspect of the event at its close was the feeling that we are not simply working at individual LTER sites but that we are all part of a large and warm community -- an LTER network.