The Oka’ Institute vision is to create practical water solutions, both locally and globally, driven by research and directed by data that result in long-term sustainable ecological management and economic development
Oka’ Institute Selects Five ECU Professors for Summer Research
ADA – The Oka’ Institute is pleased to announce it has selected five East Central University professors – Dr. Randall Maples, Dr. Leah S. Dudley, Dr. Christine Pappas, Kevin W. Blackwood, and Dr. Terrie Becerra — to lead summer research projects.
For the third consecutive year, the Oka’ Institute sponsors professor-led scientific research that gives undergrads the opportunity to assist in research. The summer research projects this year will study groundwater connections, collect data to support surface and ground water interactions, investigates water management perspectives and study the ecosystem within the Arbuckle-Simpson Aquifer.
A grant fromthe Science and Natural Resource Foundation sponsored Blackwood’s proposal, entitled “Using Groundwater Fauna as Biological Tracers to Determine Groundwater Connections in Karst Aquifers.” This research will analyze the DNA from populations of endemic Cave Amphipod to identify hydrological parameters from across the Arbuckle Mountains.
Maples’proposal, entitled “Analysis of Al2O3, TiO2 and SiO2 metal-oxide nanoparticles as potential chemical tracers”will evaluate the use of oxide, as chemical tracers through sedimentary rocked packed columns.
Pappas’ and Becerra’s proposal, entitled “Perceptions of Water as a Cultural Resource”investigates water management perspectives held by Native American tribes and non-tribal stakeholders. Is water viewed as a cultural resource?
Dudley’s proposal, entitled “Milkweed as an indicator species” will consider milkweed conservation efforts and how this may also rescue species beyond the Monarch using native species within the Arbuckle-Simpson Aquifer.
Interim reports on the projects will be submitted July 16. Final reports will be completed by Nov. 1. Each project requires the professor to select one or more undergraduates to help with research. As a part of the report, student researchers will prepare a summary detailing their work and what they learned as a result of this research.
The Oka’Institute’s Summer 2019 Research is expected to collect foundational data that will provide support for sustainable water resource management in the area.
For more on Dr. Austins work in water management check out this video . The Wilson Center in DC hosted a forum on the US Governments Global Water Strategy and featured Dr. Barney Austin.