Graduate student Christine Scoffoni was selected as the recipient of a Canadian Studies at UCLA award.
Scoffoni is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UCLA. She intends to work in partnership with researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC) to assess the mechanisms of drought tolerance in Canadian and American plant species to inform models of plant function in response to climate change. She will use the scholarship funds for travel to collaborate with UBC scientists on this never before tackled research subject.
“No study has yet to directly investigate changes in both pathways as the leaf dehydrates. We will use Cryo-Scanning Electron Microscopy (Cryo-SEM), in collaboration with researchers at the University of British Columbia Bio-Imaging Facility, for “snapshots” of the leaf xylem and mesophyll at different level of leaf dehydration, and see how it relates to the decline of conductance in each pathway,” said Scoffoni.
She continued, “This U.S./Canada collaboration is essential, because the Cryo-SEM facility at UBC is not available anywhere in the United States.”
Professor Lawren Sack recommended Scoffoni for the award and said, “Christine is the most exceptional student I have seen, and one of the very best people I know. Her proposed research on the mechanisms of plant drought tolerance for U.S. and Canadian species, in collaboration with University of British Columbia researchers is novel, important, and certain to have an impact around the world and to reflect very positively on both institutions and countries, and the Canadian Studies program itself.”
The Canadian Studies at UCLA Graduate Research and Conference Award was established to support research in Canada on a topic relevant to North America or travel to Canada to attend a scholarly conference or workshop to present a talk or poster related to a specific subject matter. This is the program’s first funding opportunity through the IoES.