From the chair, Jamie Strange, PhD
Hope springs eternal, and in spring 2022, we had many reasons to be hopeful. Our spring course enrollment increased. In fact, our molecular techniques course (taught by Pete Piermarini and Larry Phelan) exceeded capacity! We will hire at least two faculty this year; interviews for our forest entomologist position will occur in May, and our search for a faculty in turfgrass health (shared with the Department of Plant Pathology) has begun. We are also excited for a new faculty position as part of the RAISE (Race, Inclusion and Social Equity) initiative at Ohio State. We collaborated with the Departments of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering; Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics; and the School of Environment and Natural Resources as part of the new CFAES Urban HERO (Health, Environment, and Race Outcomes) collaborative to get a cluster hire approved in CFAES. Our position will focus on urban insect ecology, specifically with insects of public health interest in urban communities. This faculty search is planned for autumn 2022.
Our faculty, staff, and students won several awards at the ESA-NCB meeting, CFAES award competition, and the CFAES Research Conference (full list of Entomology awardees), and we were able to gather in person to celebrate the accomplishments of our many Entomology award-winners at the 2021-2022 CFAES Awards Ceremony. Our efforts to aid undergraduate students by raising scholarship funds have started to bear fruit. In the first six months we have raised $18,070—20% of our goal! Click to learn more about this effort and donate here.
We are also happy for Jim Hacker, our CFAES Wooster research associate, who retired after 32 years of service. Hacker helped with trapped flying squirrels, bats in our hallways, equipment breakdowns, and coordinating the move to the new Wooster Science Building, among many other duties. We wish Jim Hacker the best.
As we wrap up the spring semester, we hope to see many more of you at our upcoming Wooster Science Building Open House: save the date of May 19 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., which will overlap with our annual Entomology Spring Awards Picnic. This will be an opportunity to tour our new labs in Wooster and the United Titanium Bug Zoo, as well as to connect with many in our Ohio State Entomology community.