Forest management researcher designs museum installation

Amanda Bunce
Amanda Bunce

Amanda Bunce, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment, recently translated her forestry research into an art installation. In a collaboration with faculty and students in School of Fine Arts, she created a piece about tree sway for the Weather Report, an exhibit currently on view at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

The Weather Report explores weather phenomena and the Earth’s atmosphere through different visual media, including sculpture, drawing, painting, installation and video. According to the press release, the exhibit aims “to reveal the sky as a site where the romantic, the political, the social, and the scientific co-exist and inform one another.”

Bunce, who completed her undergraduate degree in studio art, was approached by artist Pat Pickett about turning her research into an artistic form for the exhibition. They first met at the 8th International Conference on Wind and Trees at the National Center for Atmospheric Research’s Mesa Laboratory in Boulder, CO in 2017.

“I gave a talk about my research and she gave a talk about her art,” says Bunce. “About a year later, Pat told me that she was in this upcoming show at the Aldrich and the organizers were looking to incorporate some science. She suggested they contact me. It’s ironic because I got my bachelor’s in art and I said, ‘That’s it for that. I’m going to do anything else.’ Now, here I am in a legitimate gallery.” Continue reading

CAHNR in the news

Students readingUConn Today announced that in response to a rapidly expanding commercial hemp industry driven by interest in products with CBD oil, UConn opened a laboratory where the plant can be tested for a variety of compounds. Christopher Perkins, a CAHNR alumnus, is the laboratory’s director. He says the lab has received a number of referrals from UConn Extension educators. The facility is part of the Center for Environmental Sciences and Engineering‘s Hemp Initiative and will support the efforts of growers, manufacturers, and researchers, and educate students interested in entering the field. The article also appeared on

Associate Research Professor Chandi Witharana of the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment is leading UConn’s involvement in the Permafrost Discovery Gateway. UConn Today announced that UConn researchers are collaborating with a number of partners to create a new online scientific resource that will document changing permafrost conditions at the sub-meter scale throughout the Arctic, providing researchers, educators and the public with new opportunities for exploration and discovery. The project will use satellite images and high-performance computing to document and display a variety of changes in the Arctic that will help researchers make more accurate predictions about how permafrost melt will affect carbon emissions and global warming. The resource will provide information that can help inform policies and management in the Arctic. EurekAlert! also reported on the project. Continue reading

Awards and achievements in CAHNR

Laura Brown recognized as Member of the Year by the Connecticut Economic Development Association

Laura Brown and Garrett Sheehan
Laura Brown with CEDAS President and CEO of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce Garrett Sheehan.

Laura Brown, community and economic development educator in UConn Extension, recently received the Connecticut Economic Development Association (CEDAS) Member of the Year Award. A CEDAS board member, the award recognized her role on the CEDAS Program Committee and the CEDAS Academy Webinar Series and coordination of the newly launched Best Practices in Land Use and Economic Development Program.

CEDAS is a non-profit association of economic development professionals.

According to the CEDAS website, the Member of the Year Award recognizes the best of Connecticut in economic development annually by recognizing a CEDAS member who has exhibited true leadership in economic development in Connecticut and has implemented an initiative that demonstrates real results and outcomes in the past year. Past awardees have been individuals, teams and/or organizations. Continue reading