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Civil engineering professor receives grant

Mar 13, 2008

Dr. Bruce Berdanier, associate professor of civil engineering at Ohio Northern University, has been awarded a planning grant in the amount of $29,664 from the National Science Foundation.

ONU is the lead institution of an international consortium of professors in mainstream universities in the United States, Mongolia and Jordan, as well as Tribal Colleges and Universities, known as the International Assessment Containment and Treatment Group (ACT Intl.). The focus of ACT Intl. is to promote international science outreach, teaching and research efforts.

The grant will fund travel costs for Berdanier and four additional ACT Intl. professors, along with four undergraduate students, one from each institution, for a planning visit to the Erdenet Mine in Mongolia. Erdenet Mine is a regional source of heavy metal contamination in Asia. The intent of the planning visit is to collect baseline data for at least two additional research proposals involving international research activities at the graduate and undergraduate levels.

Berdanier indicated that each American would be paired with an undergraduate student from Mongolia conducting the sampling and analysis this summer. The team of professors will develop a proposal to establish a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) for summer 2009, which will investigate various topics related to vectors of heavy metal contamination, monitoring and ultimate disposal based on the work conducted this summer.