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In this Section
Dr. Michael R. Twiss
Assistant Professor
Department of Biology
Clarkson University
Potsdam, New York
Chief Instructor/physical and chemical limnology

Twiss' research focuses on studying trace metal influences on phytoplankton productivity (nutrition and toxicity), and aquatic biogeochemistry in the Great Lakes. He has participated in over 15 weeks of research cruises on the Great Lakes since 1994 (C.C.G.S. Limnos, R/V Lake Guardian, and the R/V Blue Heron) including one week as chief scientist onboard the C.C.G.S Limnos in November 2001. Twiss' expertise is water sampling using trace metal clean techniques and onboard experimentation using bioassay techniques. He is currently funded (with R.M.L. McKay) through a contract with the USEPA GLNPO to contribute expertise to the Lake Erie Trophic Study; past funding for Great Lakes science has come from New York Sea Grant and NSERC. He teaches undergraduate courses in Limnology and Botany at Clarkson University, and participated in the 1993 Limnology Practicum onboard the R/V Lake Guardian.

Dr. George S. Bullerjahn
Department of Biological Sciences
Bowling Green State University
Co-instructor/nutrient bioavailability, microbiology

Bullerjahn is a molecular microbiologist working on developing molecular tools for assessing nutrient status of phytoplankton. His research background in gene regulation in cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) has led to the discovery of stress-specific gene promoters capable of sensing environmental stresses in microorganisms. In work funded by NSF (with R.M.L. McKay), he employed these promoters to design a series of cyanobacterial bioluminescent biosensors capable of detecting iron and nitrogen deficiency in natural waters. His most recent work has helped determine the overall bioavailability of Fe in Lakes Erie and Superior. Bullerjahn teaches courses in general microbiology, microbial physiology and molecular genetics.

Dr. Tom Langen
Assistant professor
Department of Biology
Clarkson University
Potsdam, New York
Co-Instructor/K-12 teacher liaison, aquatic bird ecology

Conducts research on the behavioral ecology of birds, and the effects of environmental change on animal and plant populations. He teaches undergraduate courses at Clarkson University in Animal Behavior, Conservation Biology, Ecology, and Biology for Non-Majors. He is also the co-director of a NSF REU summer research program for undergraduates in environmental sciences and engineering. He has been involved in professional development for K-12 science teachers, focusing on inquiry techniques for teaching environmental science in the field. Most recently, he was lead coordinator and scientific content specialist of a three-year NSF funded program for middle and high school science teachers focused on inquiry-driven science and tropical environmental change. This program, which was conducted by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation and the Organization for Tropical Studies, brought 55 teachers per year to Costa Rica for a rigorous one-month field program.

Dr. Steven W. Wilhelm
Assistant professor
Department of Microbiology
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee
Co-Instructor/bacterial and viral ecology

Wilhelm is an aquatic microbial ecologist interested in both the dynamics of aquatic microbes (including viruses) and the synergies between these organisms and the biogeochemistry of the lakes. Currently funded by the NSF, the EPA, NOAA and the AWWA, his prime focus in the Great Lakes is the proliferation of toxic Microcystis, the development and application for molecular tools to study these (and other cyanobacteria), and the role of viruses as mechanisms of microbial mortality and subsequent biogeochemical recycling. Having completed 20 research cruises (35 weeks at sea) since 1995, including 5 as chief scientist on the Great Lakes, his contributions to this course will be in the areas of bacterial and viral ecology as well as in the augmentation of the phytoplankton work.