McKenzie Huber and Autumn Granger

College of Forestry advisors McKenzie Huber and Autumn Granger have been recognized as the Oregon Academic Advising Association Advisors of the Year for 2020!  Autumn is a first generation college student herself, and understands the importance of having someone to help guide you. McKenzie has her Ed.M. in College Student Services Administration from Oregon State University and has dedicated her career to academic advising.

Our advisors assist students in making the most of their educational opportunity and stay with their students from orientation to graduation. Learn more about our undergraduate degree options and take a virtual tour today!

Major: Renewable Materials; Year: Senior

Renewable Materials senior Joshua Stump is hungry for international experience.

He landed at Oregon State after earning a Jazz Piano Performance degree from Arizona State University and spending five years in the United States Navy.

“Music was my passion growing up, but my first experience in college was a hard lesson for me about what happens when you don’t take education seriously,” Stump says. “With mounting student debt hanging over my head, I joined the Navy to jump start my life financially.”

After five years, he was ready to move on to the next stage and decided to follow an interest of his since childhood: sustainability and the environment.

“I’ve always had enormous respect for nature and other forms of life,” says Stump, “My dad took me to Mount Rainier National Park as a child, and that made a huge impression on me.”

After researching degrees at Oregon State, Stump chose the renewable materials program, which he knew would lead him toward a career promoting the use of natural solutions for products we use every day, including sustainable building practices.

Stump completed an internship with Boise Cascade during summer 2018. He’s also an apprentice piano restorer.

During his Navy service, Stump traveled to Australia and several Asian countries. He has not visited Europe yet, even though he is extremely interested in the area.

“I have always been very interested in German culture,” Stump says. “I have family heritage there, and I have always been fascinated with their work ethic and interest in art and music. I think Germany would be an amazing place to live.”

He is planning to participate in the short-term, faculty-led Alpine Europe program. The program, offered through the college’s Office of International Programs, takes students to the European Alps and provides a holistic view of the sustainable wood products industry. He is also interested in completing an internship focused on piano restoration in Austria

“I am hoping to combine my interests,” Stump says. “Playing piano has been what has defined me since childhood, and I would love to focus on alternatives for soundboards in pianos. They are made exclusively with Sitka spruce. With Sitka forests disappearing due to climate change, I want to help find alternatives for soundboards.”

Stump says he would love to live in Europe someday.

“My dream is to build a completely self-sustaining home,” Stump says. “I would spend my time repairing and tuning pianos and use my free time to engaging in environmental activism.”

A version of this story appeared in the Spring 2020 issue of Focus on Forestry, the alumni magazine of the Oregon State University College of Forestry. Learn more about College of Forestry research facilities and collaborations.

Major: Forest Engineering; Year: Junior

Josh Fix says he’s never seen a photo that accurately portrays just how green the forests in Oregon are.

“They’re almost glowing,” he says. “I love the simplicity of the forest; how quiet and different everything is. They provide a breath of fresh air and create wonder in me.”

Fix, who grew up in Minnesota, first fell in love with the forests of Oregon as a child during a visit to the state.

He initially declared a major in civil engineering at Oregon State before realizing he wanted to work outside.

“I found forest engineering and it was the perfect major for me,” he says. “It allows me to solve the same kind of problems and use applied science, but I get to do it outside where I see a bigger impact because of everything outdoor spaces provide.”

When he’s not studying, Fix works with the College Research Forests as a recreation field assistant. He found the position through the college’s job shadow program. He shadowed Ryan Brown, former Research Forests recreation and engagement program manager, and learned about the open position. Fix, who loves recreation as well as engineering, thought the job sounded like a perfect fit.

“I do trail maintenance, manage invasive species and repair interpretive materials at our trailheads,” Fix says. “There is something different every day.”

Matt McPharlin, recreation field coordinator and volunteer coordinator, is Fix’s supervisor, but Fix says he’s more than that.

“Matt has been a great mentor to me,” Fix says. “He encourages me to think outside the box and get the most out of this work.”

Fix says his favorite part of working in the College Research Forests is interacting with people recreating in the forests.

“I like to stop and say ‘hi,’” he says. “I meet interesting people from the community, many of whom have lived in Corvallis for years and have been using the forests longer than I’ve been alive. I like being able to talk to people and share stories.”

Fix says one of his most impactful experiences on the job was interacting with a group of blind and visually impaired hikers.

“It made me realize how special the College Research Forests are,” he says. “They are able to enjoy the forest in a completely different way than I do. It made me think about how to make the forest more accessible for differently abled individuals.”

When he’s not working, Fix utilizes the forests as a student during labs, but enjoys the forest most when he’s able to enjoy it in his free time.

“When I’m in the forest, I don’t feel the pressure of school,” he says. “I can take a deep breath and dream about my goals to manage and care for a working forest like this one day.”

A version of this story appeared in the Spring 2020 issue of Focus on Forestry, the alumni magazine of the Oregon State University College of Forestry. Learn more about College of Forestry research facilities and collaborations.

On Thursday, February 6, we recognized our 2019 Dean’s Award recipients and retirees with an awards ceremony and celebration. Since 1990, the Dean’s Awards for Outstanding Achievement have recognized outstanding contributions by our community members that significantly advanced the mission of the College. 

McKenzie Huber was recognized for outstanding achievement in Fostering Undergraduate Student Success. Students noted that McKenzie “has been a huge part of my continued success at OSU,” and “McKenzie has helped tailor a plan that fits my needs as a non-traditional eCampus student serving on active duty.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with McKenzie Huber

Kellie Cleaver from FERM was awarded for outstanding achievement in Contributions as a Student Worker.  Nominators noted “Kellie is the first to volunteer to help in any way she can, even if it is outside her position,” and “She always has a smile on her face and is a shining light on the dim days.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Kellie Cleaver

Ray Van Court was recognized for outstanding achievement in Graduate Student Leadership. Ray is a first year PhD student with five published peer-reviewed papers and one book chapter. They have three papers currently in review. Nominators noted “Ray is chair of the graduate student council, a member of the Forestry Executive Committee, treasurer for Xi Sigma Pi (the forestry honor society), member of leadership committee for IFSA (international forestry society), and they are also part of the graduate student advisory committee,” and “Ray’s commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is exceptional and their work on awareness and support makes the community much more inclusive for other graduate students.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Ray Van Court

The Pauline Barto Award for Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion went to Shannon Harwood. Nominators said, “As she visits high schools, she delivers a message of empowerment to students from all backgrounds while informing them of the opportunities available to them at OSU and the College of Forestry. These visits occur all over the west coast, in rural and urban settings, and I’ve been surprised by the number of teachers who have reached out to me personally about what a great representative Shannon is for our programs.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Shannon Harwood

Jed Cappellazzi and Reem Hajjar were recognized for outstanding achievement in the Mentorship of Graduate Students.  Students who nominated Jed noted, “Jed is an excellent resource to consult for in-depth, intellectual, and educational discussions on a variety of topics,” and “his guidance is always relevant, his expectations clear, and he always encourages progressive thinking.” One of the many students who nominated Reem noted “I entered Reem’s class feeling an incredible amount of anxiety about whether I was going to be able to do anything meaningful with my thesis, and left it feeling confident that I could pose and investigate questions that are relevant to me AND the broader scientific community.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Jed Cappellazzi

There were four very deserving recipients of this year’s Outstanding Achievement in Distinction to the College. Ari Sinha has been spearheading ground-breaking research on new and existing mass timber products, and translating it into the public domain by providing guidance and data for engineers and architects to use it confidently. Chris Dunn participated on Forest Service Committees and the Governor’s Wildfire Council in 2019.  Members of that Council wrote personally to note that “Chris’s work on helping the committee with data gathering, assessment, and mapping products related to evaluating and responding to wildfire risk in Oregon has been invaluable. His hours of hard work in producing quality products and ability to ensure they are understandable to committee members have been remarkable.” Michael Nagle’s nominator said, “He is the most brilliant graduate student I have had in my 33 years at OSU, and he is keystone to our 4 million dollar project on gene mapping from the National Science Foundation that simply could not succeed without him.” Michael Collins nominators noted, “Michael has assembled and leads a team that has taken college communications to an entirely different level,” and “Michael is unflappable, maintains a sense of humor and perspective, and is a strong leader.”

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Ari Sinha
Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Chris Dunn
Interim Dean Anthony Davis with Michael Nagle

Retirees Will Roger Admiral, Rob Pabst, Bev Law, and Glenn Folkert were recognized for their service to the college. Glenn joined the College in 1990 as a scientific buyer. If a product existed, he could find it, buy it and get it delivered in or out of the U.S. for the lowest price and fastest delivery.  In Rogers 23+ years with the college, he was on the project team for the construction of Richardson Hall, has centralized and/or supervised Communications and Marketing, Forestry Computing, the Media Center and the Student Learning Center, and has provided financial and administrative consultation to five deans and interim deans. Rob has spent the past 34 years with the college working first on ecology of woody plants, then riparian forest ecology, and then forest modeling with the Coastal Landscape Analysis and Modeling Study and the Forests-People-Fire Project.  Bev has served the State of Oregon and Oregon State University for 23 years in Biogeosciences, specializing in forest ecosystem response to climate and disturbance. Thank you for your service and contributions and all the best in retirement!

Interim Dean Anthony Davis with retirees Roger Admiral, Rob Pabst, and Bev Law
This year’s Dean’s Dinner was held on May 14, after the grand opening of the A. A. “Red” Emmerson Advanced Wood Products Laboratory.

After opening remarks from Anthony Davis, Interim Dean for the College of Forestry, three outstanding alumni were honored. Jim Johnson, interim department head of Forest Engineering, Resources & Management, presented the award to Mike Cloughesy. Mike graduated from OSU with a M.S. in Forest Science in 1983 and is currently the Director of Forestry for the Oregon Forest Resources Institute, a statewide forestry education agency. He is responsible for the development and implementation of OFRI’s forestry education programs for landowners and the general public.

Troy Hall, department head of Forest Ecosystems and Society, presented the award to Cristina Eisenberg. Cristina graduated from OSU with a PH.D. in Forestry and Wildlife in 2012. She has worked as the Chief Scientist at Earthwatch Institute, an organization based in Boston, Massachusetts since 2014.

Eric Hansen, department head of Wood Science and Engineering, presented the award to Jerrold E. Winandy. Jerrold graduated from OSU with a PH.D. in Wood Science and Engineering in 1993. He is now principal partner of Winandy & Associates LLC and an adjunct professor in the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering at the University of Minnesota. Congratulations to each of our outstanding alumni!

Each year the College of Forestry is honored and privileged to award graduate fellowships and undergraduate scholarships to deserving new and returning students. 134 undergraduate students were selected to receive scholarships totaling $486,060 for the 2019-20 academic year. Nicole Kent, our head advisor, helped congratulate these students. Twenty six graduate students, both Master- and PhD- level, received college fellowships totaling just over $121,500 for the 2019-20 academic year.

Donor contributions make a difference in the lives of our students by allowing them to fulfill their dreams of a college education, and to be successful contributors in our communities after graduation. These are the stewards of our forest ecosystems and economies, and I cannot think of a greater return on investment than their education. Donors and alumni, thank you for your wonderful generosity and outstanding contributions to the College!

To honor the dedication shown by those who support students in the College, two faculty awards were presented. The Xi Sigma Pi Julie Kliever Mentorship Award went to Bogdan Strimbu and the Aufderheide Award to Laurie Schimleck.

The evening wrapped up with two student awards. The winner of the Pack Essay Award was Paul B. Pliess for his essay: “Multicultural Stakeholders in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge”. The Photo of the Year award went to Graham Lyons, for his photo taken in the California Coastal Redwoods.

  • How did you end up at Oregon State as an undergrad? Why did you decide to stick around? What’s it like being a graduate student?

I grew up in a family of Beaver fans, so even though I’m a first-generation college student, I always saw myself here. I love the College of Forestry and the community of Corvallis. It’s a really nice place to stick around. Being a graduate student is extremely busy, but rewarding.

  • What’s your favorite part of studying wood science?

I really like that the program is technical-science focused, with a focus on industry, research and development. Hands-on experiences, in addition to industry exposure, have been crucial. The program itself has faculty and students with many diverse interests and areas of study, which provides unique perspectives and experiences.

  • What do you do when you’re not studying/working? (You could talk about your hobbies, family, friends and/or what you do for fun!)

When I’m away from campus, I enjoy hiking, fishing, and running wherever I can get away to with friends and family. I grew up around a lot of animals, so I enjoy a lot of time with my dog, Rogue, who often goes hiking with me. I enjoy watching sports, especially any Oregon State team.

  • When will you finish your program? What’s next? What’s your dream job?

I will be finishing up my master’s this June, then I will spend the summer traveling around Europe and the United States. After summer, I will be starting my career within forest products. My dream job and my eventual career goal is to be an executive on a forest products board of directors, where I can combine my knowledge, skills, and experience to benefit the company.

  • If you could be an animal, what animal would you be and why?

I would be a dog because loyalty, friendliness, ability to learn fast, fast-speed, and an adventurous spirit are great traits to have, which a dog already possesses.

The simulator has prepared you for the task ahead, yet sweat starts to drip from your brow, and the controls feel stiffer than they should. The first lever is pulled harmoniously. The second seems to stutter before falling into place. The last one brings a hard feeling to your gut, and you look out to the landscape full of logs in front of you. You have successfully replicated the simulator and moved around your first tree.

Since the 1980s, The Student Logging Training Program (SLTP) has been a part of the College of Forestry, according to Jeff Wimer, a senior instructor with the Oregon State University College of Forestry. The program allows students to experience real-world logging systems up close.

Connecting with the community and getting into the field is forest engineering student Dean Maben’s favorite part of being a member of the SLTP crew.

“I love getting the chance to get into the field and apply the things I’ve learned in the classroom,” Maben says. “It enhances my education as I am able to bridge the connection between the real world and what I am taught in class.”

Maben credits the SLTP with molding him into the person he is today.

“I’ve developed relationships I’ll have for my entire life,” he says “It’s taught me to be professional and to never stop learning.”

Maben says lifelong learning is something Wimer preaches to the crew, as he educates the next generation of professional foresters who will leave Oregon State and lead the industry.

“We have the ability to slow everything down and take the time to better teach how the various systems work. The technology we utilize is real world,” Wimer says. “We are fortunate that various machine manufacturers donate to us, on an annual basis, brand new equipment. On the crew, we continue to explore the rapidly changing technology of our industry.”

Equipment in use includes a Koller 501 Yarder, Link Belt loader and a John Deere skidder.

The SLTP also provides students the chance to participate in unique outreach experiences. In 2018, the student logging crew participated in the Pacific Logging Congress’ (PLC) Live In-Woods Show. The event invited the public to participate by viewing the latest forest industry technology in the woods.

“The show gave SLTP students a chance to interact with audiences they might now work with on a daily basis,” says Wimer, who also serves as president of the PLC. “It provided them the unique opportunity to educate other students, teachers, government representatives, loggers and the general public on the positive and sustainable methods used in the forest industry today.”

The SLTP helps Oregon State meet its land grant mission and reaches to a variety of audiences for education and training purposes.

“The program is quite unique in that there are very few universities that have such a program,” Wimer says. “The students who go through the program tend to have a leg up with their class work. Their field experience with the program gives them a frame of reference and hands on experience which allows them to excel in many of their classes.”

Blank walls in the Richardson Hall knuckle inspired the first College of Forestry art contest in 2017. Temporary walls replaced the connection point to old Peavy Hall, as construction began on the new Oregon Forest Science Complex.

The college’s faculty and staff found themselves scattered throughout other campus buildings including Richardson, Snell and Strand Hall and needed a reason to come together.

The first art contest and show with the theme, ‘The Other Side,’ was held February 17, 2017, and diversity was key to organizers and participants.

All faculty, staff and students were invited to participate, and art mediums chosen were as diverse as the people creating them. The contest saw paintings, sculptures, wood working, photography and more. The pieces were judged by representatives throughout the college and campus.

With the College of Forestry’s commitment to equity, inclusivity and diversity, 2017 also saw the formation of the college’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. The college and committee are devoted to addressing DEI issues in the realm of forestry and natural resource management – through education, research and public engagement. The committee will draw fully and inclusively on the power and force of human imagination, experience and creativity to meet the needs of today’s world.

With this in mind, the art show continued in 2018 with the theme of ‘Innovation.’

Assistant Professor Seri Robinson requires students in the art and design option within the renewable materials program to participate in the art show each year.

“It gives the students a chance at expression using media they are familiar with,” Robinson says. “Because they all have a deep science background in wood and forests, they can apply deeper meaning to art created with the art show’s theme in mind.”

Robinson thinks the art shows have been a great success. “We’ve had some really great work submitted,” Robinson says. “And it’s been a great opportunity for students to talk about their feelings about the college climate, especially in terms of diversity, in a more public forum.”

Oregon State University College of Forestry Ph.D. Student Pipiet Larasatie doesn’t have her head stuck in her books. She’s a serious learner and researcher, of course, but she’s not just concerned with her own projects. Instead, she’s working hard to make the college community and industry setting more open and inclusive for all.

She began working toward this goal in her home country of Indonesia. After earning her bachelor’s degree, she served as a civil servant in the forestry service and helped develop rural areas for ecotourism opportunities.

After earning her master’s degree in New Zealand, Larasatie was awarded a prestigious scholarship from the Indonesian government – the opportunity to earn a Ph.D. anywhere in the world, as long as the program was highly ranked.

Larasatie chose Oregon State.

“I came here because I wanted to work with Eric Hansen, who now serves as department head of Wood Science and Engineering,” Larasatie says. “All I knew about Oregon State was that Eric was here, and that he has expertise in forest products marketing and innovation, and that’s what I wanted to study.”

Hansen responded to Larasatie’s inquiry about the wood science graduate degree program quickly, despite the 14-hour time difference. “I knew that because he was responsive, it would be easy to build a relationship with him,” Larasatie says.

And it was. Luckily, Larasatie likes living in Corvallis as well.

Since arriving in 2016, Larasatie has already completed one research project about the Pacific Northwest’s public perception of mass timber buildings. What started as a class project became a peer reviewed, published research study, funded by the Oregon Forest Resources Institute, and a presentation to conference participants worldwide.

Larasatie enjoys presenting her work to scientists, industry partners and even members of the public.

“I believe that science should be communicated,” she says. “I don’t want to write a dissertation that only lives in a library archive somewhere. We need to reach a broader audience. We need to let the public know what we’re doing. We shouldn’t limit ourselves, especially because of the digital age we live in now.”

To emphasize this, Larasatie serves as a digital communication coordinator for the Society of Wood Science and Technology and participates in the steering committee for the Western Forestry Graduate Research Symposium, hosted at Oregon State each spring.

“I campaign to my fellow graduate students to get them involved as well,” she says. “I really believe that we all need to practice communicating our science.”

Larasatie also serves on the College of Forestry Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, which strives to make the college a diverse and welcoming environment.

“I felt that participating was the right thing to do,” she says. “It also relates to my dissertation topic.”

Larasatie’s dissertation is still in the research phase. She’s studying gender diversity in the forest sector, in the industry and in higher education.

“Increasing gender diversity is no longer a right thing to do, but becomes a smart thing to do,” she says.

Larasatie’s dream is to become a university professor.

“I like to do research, I like to teach, and I like to mentor young students,” she says. “I also like the university setting. Oregon State, for example, is a hub for international people coming in to reach their dreams. We all have the same goal: to make life better.”

Earning an advanced degree
The Oregon State College of Forestry enjoys a century-long reputation as a leader in forestry research, teaching and extended education. Currently the college has more than 200 graduate students, including 35 international students from all over the world. The college offers graduate degrees in four distinct areas administered by three separate departments. About 75 faculty members teach at the graduate level, and the college employs more than 300 faculty, staff and support personnel.

Graduate degrees offered include Master of Forestry (MF), Master of Science (MS), Master of Natural Resources (MNR) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).

FOREST ECOSYSTEMS + SOCIETY – MF,  MS,  PH.D.
The forest ecosystems and society graduate program develops interdisciplinary thinkers, highly capable scientists and natural resource leaders who are prepared to solve complex problems wherever they exist on the socioecological spectrum.

Students in this program learn to identify and contribute to collaborative solutions in ecology and natural resources-related social science. Students are not limited by mandated curriculum or required study tracks. Instead, faculty and professionals work with students to create their own course lists, program objectives and research projects, allowing students to focus on the skills and knowledge most relevant to their interests.

Students may earn an MF, MS or Ph.D. as they build the skills and knowledge needed for a fascinating career in research, teaching, management policy or outreach.

MASTER OF NATURAL RESOURCES – MNR
The master of natural resources graduate program is an interdisciplinary program designed for natural resources professionals. The 45-credit program is taught entirely online through the nationally-acclaimed OSU Ecampus. The program is offered as a nonthesis option only, similar to the Master of Business Administration (MBA) or MF.

Students in the program develop analytical and problem-solving skills needed to provide workable solutions for complex natural resources challenges and learn how to balance competing economic, health and environmental interests.

Graduates of this program enjoy virtually unlimited career opportunities in natural resources management, ranging from GIS experts and water conflict managers to wildlife habitat specialists and environmental policy analysts.

SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENT – MF,  MS,  PH.D.
The sustainable forest management graduate program emphasizes the conservation of forest-dominated landscapes to meet ecological, economic and social criteria over long time frames through active forest management.

Students in this program may earn an MF,  MS or Ph.D., and can specialize in one of six areas of concentration: forest operations planning and management; forest policy analysis and economics; forest biometrics and geomatics; silviculture, fire and forest health; forest soil and watershed processes; or engineering for sustainable forestry.

The sustainable forest management graduate program provide graduates with the foundation for excellent career opportunities throughout industry, higher education, government and nonprofits.

WOOD SCIENCE – MS,  PH.D.
The Department of Wood Science and Engineering at the Oregon State College of Forestry offers a graduate education fully engaged in the dynamism and diversity of a rapidly evolving international field. Its wood science graduate program is fundamentally collaborative in nature and offers MS and Ph.D. degrees in a wide range of specialties, from chemistry to business.

Dual graduate degrees are encouraged. Common partner disciplines include civil engineering, mechanical engineering, materials science or forest science.

The demand for energy and thousands of consumer and industrial products made from wood and other renewable materials continues to grow as society becomes more aware of sustainability and green issues. The wood science program provides the foundation for great careers.

GRADUATING OUR FUTURE LEADERS
Educating the future research, teaching and outreach leaders in forest landscapes and ecosystems, the college awarded 102 graduate degrees in FY 2017 and FY 2018.

PARTNERSHIP IDENTIFIES TALENTED GRADUATE STUDENT CANDIDATES
In December 2017, an initiative for recruitment of Native Americans for the college’s graduate forestry programs was developed, funded partially by the department with a supplemental Graduate Laurels Block Grant. A committee including Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Intertribal Timber Council, the USDA Forest Service, and Salish-Kootenai College assisted in identifying potential graduate student candidates. Four Native American students were selected for admission in Fall 2018 and offered these tuition support awards. These students represent 23 percent of the fall 2018 class of forestry graduate program students.

FELLOWSHIPS PROVIDE AFFORDABLE OPPORTUNITIES
• The Dean’s Investment Fund funded two $30,000 matches to the Provost’s Distinguished Doctoral Fellowship, awarded in FY 2017 and FY 2018. The college also awarded more than $200,000 in graduate fellowships in FY 2017 and FY 2018, with a portion of funds coming from the Dean’s Investment Fund.
• With the goal of recruiting and retaining graduate students based on diversity and/or academic merit, the college awarded and administered $140,000 in tuition scholarship funding as part of the Graduate Laurels Block Grant from the OSU Graduate School.

SHARING GROUNDBREAKING RESEARCH
Organized by graduate students, the college hosted the fifth and sixth annual Western Forestry Graduate Research Symposium. The symposium showcases current graduate student research and promotes academic excellence by challenging students to present their work and receive feedback from their academic and professional peers. In 2017 and 2018, the symposium showcased more than 80 combined poster and oral presentations.