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A Year to Remember

AY 2020-21 was certainly one for the books at Bucknell. It presented its challenges, had us on and off campus a few times and at times had us questioning how we would make it through all the hurdles. But this year also brought out the best in us as Bucknellians. We banded together and lifted one another up. We supported each other’s education, research, hard work, mental and physical health, social and racial rights, and so much more.

As a university, we’ve had to adapt and adjust to changes in the way we learn, teach, and engage. Technology became ever more present in our already tech-driven world. We became accustomed to erratic changes in where our classrooms and offices might be on any given day. Nevertheless, we became more unified.

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As a country we saw hatred-filled acts that spawned change. The country witnessed the murder of George Floyd, the uprising that followed, and the birth of the Black Lives Matter movement. As a university, we saw the response to this movement with the creation of the Anti-Racism Fund, a change in curriculum and employee training to include racial education and equality, and a rise in opportunities for black and brown Bucknellians to be truly heard. As a continued effort for improvement in diversity and inclusion, Bucknell joined over 50 other universities and colleges as an inaugural member of the new Liberal Arts Colleges Racial Equity Leadership Alliance to better tackle racial issues within our campus community.

We withstood a long and exhausting presidential election that in many ways divided us as a country and as a people. But we held hope, both as a country and a university community looking to the future. Many of us came together as the results were announced and for many, it marked a new beginning.

Groups of students, faculty, and staff alike banned together and inspired change on many issues. On campus in September, many rose up for student food insecurity that gained local news coverage. And so birthed the Food and Nutrition Task Force and the B-Swipes Donation Program to ensure no Bucknell student goes hungry.

In March, we were shaken by the violence against Asian Americans in Atlanta. We stood with those of Asian descent both on campus and around the world and showed our support for them and intolerance of such hatred and racism. We felt the impact of the verdict of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd, both as a community and a country.

The BCSE would like to congratulate all of you that are graduating this year (we know it was no small task) and praise the continued hard work and effort of all other students. We all have much to be proud of this academic year. We’ve shown that Bucknell has heart. We’ve shown how resilient we are. We’ve shown how adaptable we are. Bucknellians are dedicated survivors, workers, liberators, and philanthropists. We are ‘Ray Bucknell, strong and proud.

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Some Important Research Opportunities You Should Know About

Now is the time to be thinking about your research for the summer. Deadlines for many opportunities are fast approaching. So in the spirit of staying in-the-know, here is what we know about upcoming opportunities and their deadlines.

PUR Eligibility:

The 2022 application has been updated to clarify that PUR is open to proposals from all disciplines. In the original version, proposals were focused in biology, neuroscience, animal behavior, or cell biology/biochemistry to resources available in the Biology Department. PUR will now consider applications in all departments and collaborate with Biology to ensure maximal access to available funding. Please find an updated application form here:

Upcoming Deadlines: 

Feb 1 – Geisinger Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP)

Feb 5 – Clare Boothe Luce (women in STEM fields in which they are underrepresented)

Feb 8 – Program for Undergraduate Research (research and creativity in all disciplines)

Feb 15 – McKenna Summer Environmental Internship (environmental research)

Feb 28 –  Energy and Food Independence in Susquehanna Communities Fellowship (renewable energy)

Mar 31 – Humanities: Mellon Student Research Grant (reimbursable expenses) 

Rolling – Confounding Problems in Humanities and Arts (reimbursable expenses, esp travel when allowed, virtual travel otherwise)

Varied – Undergraduate Research Opportunities (off-campus opportunities in STEM & Social Sciences funded by NSF)

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Call for Proposals: Sustainable Susquehanna River Communities

Center for Sustainability & the Environment

Grant Funding via The Degenstein Foundation


Samantha Myers, CSE Operations Manager
(570) 577-2437
Olin 463

Bucknell University is located in an area rich with ecological, social and cultural heritage. Historical development practices such as logging, mining, farming and short term land development have left lasting impacts on ecosystems and river towns. Located on the banks of the West Branch of the
Susquehanna River, the CSE has the distinct advantage to study how impacted river communities, both human and non-human, can become more resilient and adaptive. Such communities are poised to reclaim a future of economic, social and environmental prosperity. Analyzing current
challenges/opportunities, providing affordable solutions, and creating sustainable models for these communities that solve their most pressing problems will position our Bucknell students to become leaders in the world during the coming years when these interdisciplinary confounding problems (technical and societal) come to the forefront.

In keeping with the Center’s mission and current priorities, while building on past experiences, the CSE has been successfully awarded a Degenstein Foundation planning grant to explore the use of multidisciplinary field stations centered on key United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to build partnerships with communities along the Susquehanna River. The following SDG’s: Life on land (15), Life below water (14), Sustainable cities and communities (11), Clean water and sanitation (6), Affordable and clean energy (7), Decent work and economic growth (8), and Climate action (13) directly address local and regional environmental and sustainability needs, and will help guide the development of near and long term regional solutions. The CSE believes that addressing these economic, social and environmental issues will lead to the development of successful models for communities across our nation seeking more sustainability.

About the CSE

The mission of the Bucknell CSE is to “create impactful, interdisciplinary, experiential opportunities for learning and research that address global environmental and sustainability challenges” while leveraging our unique intersection of 3 Colleges housed in one dynamic, leading liberal arts university. Our 2017-2020 strategic plan calls for efforts to enhance Bucknell University’s capacity to teach and conduct research in critical areas of sustainability and the environment, as well as to enable transformational opportunities for the campus and surrounding communities through experiential learning in these areas. At the CSE, we seek to establish long-term partnerships, research, and teaching that bring together faculty, staff, students, and community partners to develop greater understanding of the complexities that underlie our most challenging environmental, social, economic and engineering issues.


Per our grant budget, we will make available multiple research fellowship awards (faculty and student), up to $5,000, for the Summer of 2021. If you wish to complete your research in the Spring of 2021, you must contact CSE Faculty Director, Peter Jansson at or CSE Operations Manager, Samantha Myers at by 11:59 pm on January 15, 2021. If you elect to complete your research in the spring, you will be paid either hourly or academic credit. Each summer research fellow includes a $3,500 student research stipend, $1,000 stipend for their faculty mentor and up to $500 in support for equipment / supplies – as required. Each summer student will work between 8-10 weeks with their faculty mentor pursuing full-time scholarly work on one (or more)
of the SDGs above in collaboration with a Program Director from the Center. In addition, students will receive on-campus summer housing for the duration of their project. Students will not receive academic credit for this research.


All full-time Bucknell undergraduate students enrolled in any of our three (3) Colleges in-person are eligible to apply. Due to university guidelines, students participating in virtual/distance learning are not eligible. Awards are not available for the summer following the student’s senior year, although students enrolled in a five-year degree program are eligible to receive an award during the summer after their fourth year.


  • Complete a short proposal describing interest, preferred SDG study area(s) and qualifications
  • Identify a faculty mentor willing to undertake the research and why
  • Complete scholarly project for 8-10 weeks with their faculty mentor and assigned CSE program director
  • Attend 3 project meetings with CSE Program Directors, staff and other student/faculty research teams to provide project updates, along with a written 1-page update
  • Submit a report on their scholarly work by August 14, 2021
  • Submit a 1-2-page reflection of the summer research experience
  • Present the results of their research work with their faculty mentor (via poster and/or oral presentation) at the 16th Annual Susquehanna River Symposium Friday, November 5th and Saturday, November 6 th 2021

Question & Answer Session

There will be no formal question and answer session this year, however, you may request to schedule a virtual meeting to answer any questions you may have by emailing

Application Deadline

February 6th, 2021 by 11:59 p.m. (rolling thereafter until all fellowships are awarded)


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Confirmed: BCSE Student Excursions to Return in the Spring.

In the face of the pandemic, the BCSE was forced to cancel all otherwise normal operations and events. With strict guidelines put in place and a new normal settling in, the whole campus was grasping to find solid ground. As told in “Go on an Adventure with Us: How the BCSE is Making Lemonade from Lemons”, the BCSE saw a need and thought outside the box to fulfill it. And thus were born the Fall student excursions.

The student excursions started out as a pilot project. Each program director created excursions in relation to their program and the BCSE as a whole. It turned out, the students excursions were just what the doctor ordered, so to speak. Students began trickling in. Word of mouth is a powerful thing and the excursions were soon buzzing around campus. What started as individual sign-ups soon also developed into a platform for team-building for Bucknell’s sports teams and outdoor classroom experiences for many classes and departments.

We are proud to say that we were able to give the students a way to get out and have fun while still staying safe, but we also had a lot of fun and laughs while immersing students in a whole new learning experience.

Because of the tremendous success of the excursions and all the positive feedback that we’ve received, we have decided we will continue the student excursions in the spring. Students will have the opportunity to go on excursions they’ve previously enjoyed (or get that second shot at getting in), as well as some possible new adventures. The excursions and their schedules are yet to be determined, but keep an eye on our blog and social media pages to stay alert to what’s coming and when.

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We would also like to thank everyone that helped to make these excursions a success. From mentions and shares on social media, to word of mouth and collaborations. We appreciate everyone’s help and we appreciate the amazing groups of students we had the opportunity to meet and reconnect with. We look forward to seeing you all and many more in the spring!