Tag Archives: CMU

‘On The Map’ visits CMU’s Beaver Island facility

Uzarski and crew sinking equipment.

Uzarski and crew sinking equipment.

Our first stop on Beaver Island is a one-of-a-kind biological research facility operated by Central Michigan University.

Don Uzarski is director of CMU’s Great Lakes Research Institute, and my captain when I went for a lesson on the water. Continue reading

Photography class takes a snapshot of Beaver Island life

Picture captured by Melanie Mrozek during the class.

Picture captured by Melanie Mrozek during the class.


In an interesting twist on a photography class, a CMU art professor left for Beaver Island with 15 honors students and a five day lesson plan.

The students were asked to explain the narrative of day-to-day life on Beaver Island, using nothing but pictures they took on their smartphones. Continue reading

Lower minimum wage for ages 20 and under could become a law

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The minimum wage could drop for workers under 20 years of age, under a proposal in Lansing.

The bill states that the minimum wage for workers under 20 would be reduced to $7.25 an hour. Employees could get paid as little as $6.25 an hour for training. Continue reading

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow visits CMU for symposium

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Democratic U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow delivered the keynote address at today’s “Great Lakes Science in Action” symposium at Central Michigan University.
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CMU receives nearly 400K for invasive species research

European Frogbit

European Frogbit


CMU has been awarded nearly $400,000 to expand its work on controlling invasive species in Michigan, which was the second highest grant amount received among 19 other organizations.

According to the DNR, the grant aims to evaluate and expand management tools for invasive species in the Great Lakes.
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Collaboration: The future of environmental rehabilitation

Central-Michigan-University-seal.svgScientist’s aren’t known for sharing the glory of an extraordinary discovery, but some researchers working on Great Lakes restoration are trying to change that publish-or-perish mentality. Continue reading

Pioneering Great Lakes research miles from the shore

Although Winter is well on its way, water researchers at CMU don’t plan on slowing down.

Smack dab in the center of the Lower Peninsula, miles from the shores of the Great Lakes, lies a somewhat unexpected but active participant in the restoration and protection of Michigan’s waterways. Continue reading

CMU leading the way with fermentation program


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College and beer is usually a traditional combination with the students on the drinking side of the operation, says a Central Michigan University official, but a new program at CMU is hoping to train the next generation of users.
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Tracing human impacts to the Great Lakes miles from the shore


As PhD student Neil Schock stood next to what looks like a ditch to the untrained eye, he recorded water data with another CMU student.

They’re actually near a wetland, and Schock is working on what will eventually be his dissertation.

He wants to create a mathematical tool that the Department of Environmental Quality will use to determine whether or not a wetland has a ground water connection. If so, the DEQ has jurisdiction over that ecosystem and is able to protect it from being repurposed.

So what does Neil do with these readings?

“All this data that were collecting will go into multivariate ordinal statistics to kinda generate out what we’re seeing in those environments. Taking all those parameters with multiple dimensions and kinda boil them down into a few dimensions so we can visualize what’s happening in those areas.”

This is no small undertaking, and Schock is building this research from the ground up.

You may wonder, ‘what does a wetland have to do with climate change?’ Experts like Don Uzarski, the director of CMU’s Institute for the Great Lakes Restoration, say the answer is a lot.

“Were just starting to realize in the past probably 20 years just how important these small systems are, small or large, to the overall ecosystem and the Great Lakes in particular.”

Uzarski says this murky, unglamorous area is imperative to the health of Michigan’s water system, explaining that wetlands act as the kidneys of Michigan’s larger waterways.

“So anything that we put on the agricultural field or even a dry precipitation or dust that falls on to the field, theres going to be nutrients, theres going to be some level of toxicants associated with that. In this case its going to come through this wetland. Even though its in the center of Michigan its still acting as a filter and processing that material before it makes it down to that drainage ditch eventually makes it to a stream, that will eventually make its way to the Great Lakes.”

Uzarski says Schock’s work is crucial to the health of the United State’s waterways. He says America is essentially running on a single kidney at this point.

“50 percent of wetlands nationwide have been lost. In some regions though, like the Saginaw Bay region we’ve lost 95 percent of the coastal wetlands already. Other states are in much worse shape than we are.”

Back in the field, Schock explains that although he’s pioneering this kind of wetland experimentation, he never feels lost.

“For the most part we’ll let the data lead us, Ya know, data doesn’t lie. Ya just kinda go with what ya got and with the resources that you have, and with sound statistical analysis it will lead you where you wanna go.”

There’s one quality I’ve found in every scientist I talked to for this series. Pride in the Great Lakes, and the state of Michigan.

Schock, says he wants to protect the Great Lakes with his research by stopping potential negative impacts at their source.

“It’s easy to lose sight of where certain things are impacting the Great Lakes. I’ve always been interested in the Great Lakes ecosystem and the health of the Great Lakes, so you gotta get down to where are these impacts coming from. And this is a big part of that.”

Schock says if things continues to run smoothly, his wetland tool should be ready for statewide use in two to three years.

He says the best part of his job is the office he works in. Michigan’s outdoors, the trees, the wildlife and the clean water is one of the defining features of the Great Lakes state. Schock and Uzarski ‘clock in’ every day to ensure those features will still be there when the rest of us ‘clock out’.

CMU’s engineering program ranked among top 100 in the nation

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Small classes and collaborative relationships with local industry has earned Central Michigan University’s engineering program a spot among the nation’s 100 best engineering programs.
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CMU physical therapy students move studies to Houghton

correct PT picA dozen Central Michigan University physical therapy students have ventured north to continue their studies,not at CMU, but at Michigan Tech in Houghton. Continue reading

Holocaust Memorial makes summer stop at Central


Dr. Otmar von Verschuer examines twins at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute. As the head of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute’s Department for Human Heredity, Verschuer, a physician and geneticist, examined hundreds of pairs of twins to study whether criminality, feeble-mindedness, tuberculosis, and cancer were inheritable. In 1927, he recommended the forced sterilization of the “mentally and morally subnormal.” Verschuer typified those academics whose interest in Germany’s “national regeneration” provided motivation for their research.–Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Berlin-Dahlem

Dr. Otmar von Verschuer examines twins at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute. As the head of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute’s Department for Human Heredity, Verschuer, a physician and geneticist, examined hundreds of pairs of twins to study whether criminality, feeble-mindedness, tuberculosis, and cancer were inheritable. In 1927, he recommended the forced sterilization of the “mentally and morally subnormal.” Verschuer typified those academics whose interest in Germany’s “national regeneration” provided motivation for their research.–Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Berlin-Dahlem

There are many memorials dedicated to remembering the Holocaust. Continue reading