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PEI Awarded Five Environmental Studies Prizes and Named 44 Environmental Studies Certificate Recipients on Class Day

Class Day 2010
From top to bottom: The Class of 2010 on the steps in the Guyot Atrium; Henry Barmeier ’10 is awarded the T.A. Barron Environmental Leadership Prize by Stephen Pacala, director of PEI; Caitlin Alev ’10, winner of the Peter W. Stroh ’51 Environmental Thesis Prize; Martina Car '10 (left) and Ruth Metzel '10, both winners of the Environmental Studies Thesis Prize, accept their awards from Professor Henry Horn. (Photos: Angela Petsis)

At PEI's Class Day celebration in Guyot Hall on May 31, Lars O. Hedin, director of the Environmental Studies Program, lauded the 2010 recipients of the Environmental Studies Certificate and wished the seniors every success with their future endeavors.

He emphasized that the scope and complexities of environmental problems facing the world today are the greatest humans have ever known and solving these vexing problems requires an interdisciplinary approach.

"These environmental problems," he said, "are everywhere. We face them at work whether in government, business, not-for-profits, or the Academy and in our personal lives on a daily basis. It is, therefore, so important to have a broad perspective and to be able to work across disciplinary lines."

Hedin continued, "this is the vibrancy of PEI's program and what makes it so effective. It is the interdisciplinary center of environmental research, education and outreach at Princeton University. Today's graduates personify this innovative approach, hailing from 16 different academic departments and majors."

Henry S. Horn, acting director of the Environmental Studies Program, and Xenia K. Morin, 2010 senior colloquium adviser, recognized the certificate recipients and presented each graduate with a PEI orange and black umbrella, anecdotally referred to by Horn as "a personal environmental modification device."

The number of Environmental Studies Certificate recipients set a new record of 45, up from 38 in 2009. The class included representatives from each academic discipline including:

  • 45 percent from the social sciences
  • 24 percent from the natural sciences
  • 24 percent from engineering
  • 7 percent from the humanities

Horn and PEI Director Stephen W. Pacala awarded five prizes to the following students:

  • Environmental Studies Thesis Prize
    Awarded to a senior in the Environmental Studies Certificate Program who has written the best thesis in the broad area of environmental studies.
    Ruth N. Metzel, 2010, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
    Martina Car, 2010, Anthropology
  • Becky Colvin '95 Memorial Award
    Awarded to a junior in the Environmental Studies Program or Ecology & Evolutionary Biology department to support environmental field research. Hannah C. Barkley, 2011, Ecology & Evolutionary
  • T.A. Barron Environmental Leadership Prize
    Awarded to a senior who has distinguished him or herself by demonstrating exceptional dedication to environmental concerns not only in formal classes and independent academic work but also by leading and encouraging other activities among fellow students and in the community at large.
    Henry R. Barmeier, 2010, Woodrow Wilson School