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UW Science Posse Benefits from NSF Grant

November 23, 2009

A nearly $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) will help the Science Posse, a group of University of Wyoming graduate students whose primary goal is to raise awareness and understanding of science, expand its offerings to schoolchildren across the state.

The five-year grant -- awarded to Don Roth, the Science Posse's principal investigator and a UW professor of molecular biology and pharmacy -- will allow the Science Posse to add education on the complexities between water and energy to its already expansive list of offerings.

"This is a great opportunity for the University of Wyoming to continue to enhance science education in classrooms across the state, and we're especially grateful to the National Science Foundation for its continuing support of the Science Posse and its mission," Roth says. "The Science Posse's initial focus, and a continuing focus today, was on ecological matters and renewable resources. What this grant allows us to do is basically expand the Science Posse by utilizing the funding to provide an educational element on the unique and important relationship between water and energy."

The NSF grant will continue through 2013 at $575,463 per year, contingent upon the availability of funds and the project's scientific progress.

The Science Posse has worked with about 70 teachers and 2,500 students in 12 Wyoming counties and 34 schools since its creation in 2006. The group's goals are to increase public appreciation and awareness of science, improve students' understanding of science, inspire students to consider careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics and develop and enhance partnerships between UW and the Wyoming energy industry.

The 2009-10 Science Posse includes 10 UW graduate fellows who specialize in botany, ecology, geology, mathematics, psychology and zoology and physiology.

For more information on the Science Posse, go to the group's Web site at


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