A Closer Look
September Newsletter #89

LMC Events - Activities - Presentations - Publications - AWRI Seminar Series - AWRI In The News

AWRI Staff

Main campus students who interned at AWRI

In the biological sciences, mutualism is defined as a symbiotic relationship in which both participants benefit; this is certainly true for the interaction between AWRI and the Biology Department at GVSU. The two units have interacted since AWRI was established. Dr. Ron Ward, the first director of AWRI, was a faculty member in the Biology Department before assuming his position at AWRI. Since then, numerous AWRI and Biology Department faculty have collaborated on an array of projects. Collectively, the number of aquatic scientists and the range of expertise they offer is extraordinary and makes GVSU unique among most state and regional institutions.

Collaboration between AWRI and the Biology Department extends beyond research through the educational mission of GVSU. The AWRI vessels and facilities have long been an integral part of several courses offered by Biology Department faculty. More recently, AWRI faculty have assumed greater educational duties, and now contribute significantly to undergraduate and graduate education. At the graduate level, this collaboration provides a unique educational experience and students pursuing an emphasis in aquatic sciences account for a significant portion of all students enrolled in the program.

The collaborative educational and research programs in aquatic sciences at GVSU builds on the complement of faculty expertise, modern facilities, and the unique aquatic ecosystems of the region. As water-related issues gain greater local, regional, national, and international attention, GVSU will assume a significant role in the future of critical aquatic resources.

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AWRI Events

  • September 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29 - BIO 651, Emerging Issues In Water Resources class

  • September 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29 - BIO 535, Aquatic Microbial Ecology class

  • September 10 - AWRI Seminar Series, Dr. Gertrud Nurnberg, Freshwater Research, Canada, presented "The devil is in the sediments: internal phosphorus loading in lakes".

  • September 16 - Muskegon Sustainability Coalition's Recycling Committee held a meeting.

  • September 22 - Leadership Muskegon visited the Institute for a tour, presentation, and a cruise on the W.G. Jackson.

  • September 23 – The Muskegon Rotary Club’s Community Fund Committee held a meeting.

  • September 25 – AWRI Seminar Series, Dr. Scott Peacor, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife at Michigan State University, presented “Effects of invasive spiny water flea on Lake Michigan’s food web: Is scaring prey more important than eating prey?”.

  • September 28 – Crockery Creek Watershed held a meeting.

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AWRI Activities

Leadership Muskegon took a cruise on the W.G. Jackson on September 22.

The U.S. EPA Lake Michigan Forum held a Muskegon Lake Harbor bus tour on September 24 that made a stop at AWRI where Janet Vail gave a brief talk about AWRI.

Rod Denning attended the Green Infrastructure Leadership Council in Grand Rapids on Sept. 24th

Brian Hanson met with Rob Zbiack, from FTCH, and Chad Fizzel, from the MDEQ, to discuss the Action Plans for Spring Lake, Rogue River, and Dickerson Creek on September 2.

John Koches hosted the Regional Indicator Project Stakeholder Meeting at the GVSU Alumni House on September 8.

Mark Luttenton attended the North American Diatom Symposium in Iowa on September 23 – 26.

Shirley McIntire and Michele Smith, Research Vessel Instructors, represented AWRI at the Salmon Festival in Grand Haven on September 19.

Rick Rediske led a cruise on the D.J. Angus with Joe Verschaeve's class (GVSU's Sociology Department) on Research Methods in Social Sciences on September 21.

Carl Ruetz’s BIO 362 - Fisheries Biology class went to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago on a fieldtrip on September 26.

Carl Ruetz participated on an executive committee conference call with members of the Michigan Chapter of the American Fisheries Society on September 22.

Al Steinman participated in the interviews of 5 finalists for the Director of MAREC position during the month of September.

Al Steinman participated in a conference call for the Healing Our Waters Science Advisory Committee on September 3.

Al Steinman participated in a conference call for IJC’s Ecosystem Technical Work Group on September 8.

Al Steinman attended the Goodwill Industries Board of Directors meeting on September 21.

Janet Vail has been asked to be a member of the Advisory Board for the GVSU Environmental Studies Minor.

Janet Vail is working with the GVSU School of Education and the Regional Math & Science on the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative for Kent County. She is on the committee to hire a project director and the professional development committee.

Janet Vail helped facilitate the Annual Project WET Community Water Festival in Big Rapids on September 25.

The Lake Michigan: State of Lake Conference was held September 29 - October 1 in Milwaukee. Janet Vail gave the opening welcome.

Jon VanderMolen facilitated an Environmental Stakeholder Group meeting on September 8.

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AWRI Presentations

Rod Denning gave a presentation to the Fremont Area Community Foundation - Ice Mountain Environmental Stewardship Fund Advisory Committee on our Critical Lands Mapping Project in the Lower Muskegon River Watershed on Oct. 9th.

Mark Luttenton presented to Al Steinman's Emerging Issues class on September 22.

Rick Rediske gave a presentation on his MDEQ grant at the Water Studies Center in Traverse City on September 19. The title was “The Role of Cladophora Mats on the Sequestration of E. coli and Microcystin in Saginaw Bay and Grand Traverse Bay”. He will give a similar presentation in Bay City on Oct 7.

Rick Rediske provided a guest lecture at Grand Rapids Community College for a class on Sustainability and Society on September 23. His lecture is titled “Sustainable Stormwater Management”.

Rick Rediske presented on Harmful Algal Blooms at the Lake Michigan: State of the Lake Conference in Milwaukee which runs from September 29 - October 1.

Al Steinman gave the welcome and a presentation on AWRI to Leadership Muskegon on September 22.

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AWRI Publications

Bopi Biddanda had a poem published in theBulletin of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography.

Biddanda, B. A., J. B. Cotner and T. H. Johengen (2009): Toast to a Lake Brew. American Society of Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin 18 (3): 76.

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AWRI Seminar Series

October 2, 2009
Dr. Allen Burton
Professor and Director
Natural Resources and Environment
Cooperative Institute for Limnology & Ecosystems Research
University of Michigan
Seminar title: “Assessing Aquatic Ecosystem Impairment: Issues and Approaches”

November 13, 2009
Dr. Stuart Jones
Postdoctoral Research Associate
W. K. Kellogg Biological Station
Michigan State University
Seminar title: "Influence of Terrestrial Organic Matter on Stability of Aquatic Ecosystems"

January 8, 2010
Sonia Joseph
Michigan Sea Grant Outreach Coordinator
Center of Excellence for Great Lakes Human Health (CEGLHH)
NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory

February 12, 2010
Dr. Greg Dick
Asst. Professor
Department of Geosciences
University of Michigan

March 12, 2010
Dr. Hugh MacIsaac
Professor and Chair and Director
Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Invasive Species Research
Canadian Aquatic Invasive Species Network
University of Windsor

April 9, 2010
Dr. Robert Michael McKay
Department of Biological Sciences
Bowling Green State University


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AWRI In The News

“Grand Valley State University water research on a funding roll”

Muskegon Chronicle, September 1, 2009

The article is about the $1.5 million in research grants AWRI has recently secured.


“Water studies have good cash flow”

Grand Rapids Press, September 2, 2009

The article is about the $1.5 million in research grants AWRI has recently secured.


“Editorial: Research center reputation growing”

Muskegon Chronicle, September 4, 2009

The article speaks of the recent grants AWRI has received.


“Lake Huron Sinkholes”

Discovery Channel, Daily Planet, September 22, 2009

This program can be viewed at the web site below:



“Superfunds gone AWRI: GVSU research institute continues growth, secures public, private grants”

MiBiz, September 14, 2009

The article speaks of the recent grants AWRI has received.


“Public, officials invited to tour Muskegon Lake waterfront”

Muskegon Chronicle, September 15, 2009

The article is about a tour being sponsored by Lake Michigan Forum. AWRI was one of the stops on this waterfront tour.

Janet Vail is quoted.

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Page last modified March 20, 2012