IDRT selects 2 students for REU Programs


Source: National Science Foundation

IDRT recently welcome Sarah Lawrence and Shefali Venkatramani (Shea) to our team for the summer of 2021. Sarah and Shea are participating in a National Science Foundation (NSF) program called the Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU).  The REU program is a grant-based summer platform hosted by universities across the nation to enhance undergraduate participation in high-level, academic research. For eight to ten weeks, REU students participate in real-world scientific investigations under the guidance of a faculty mentor and receive both a stipend and housing for the duration of the program.

Sarah Lawrence is a Senior at the University of Idaho.  She is working on her Bachelor of Science, Geography and minoring in International Studies.  She is passionate about making a positive impact in the world. She has been a Licensed Massage Therapist for eleven years and recently completed seven years working with “at-risk youth” at the Idaho Youth Challenge Academy. Now she is pursuing a new career path in Geography. Always fascinated by maps, charts, and all other graphic representations of cultures and countries, she is pleased to be expanding her knowledge through the REU: Oceanus Internship. She is interested in urban/regional planning, as well as studying natural disasters in search of innovative ways to help communities become more resilient and mitigate loss. To add, Sarah is CAD certified and a mother to three.
Shea is a fourth-year Marine Sciences major and Statistics minor at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.  She participates in on-campus chemical carbonate research by sampling and analyzing the chemical composition of Morro Bay and using statistical analysis to identify spatial and temporal trends.  She hopes to obtain a Ph.D. in Oceanography and use statistical modeling to develop and analyze the efficiency of restoration efforts. She wants her future work to help mitigate environmental inequity in historically marginalized communities and eventually go into education. She chose to participate in this particular REU to learn more about how statistical analysis and modeling can lead to practical, real life change.