University of Delaware Environmental Soil Chemistry Members In The News


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October/November 1999

Volume 8 Issue 2

UD Student Wins Graduate Student Award


Kirk Scheckel, graduate student in environmental soil chemistry at the University of Delaware College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, recently received the Graduate Student Award of the American Society of Agronomy &emdash; Northeast Region. The award, given at the Northeast Branch Annual Meeting of the American Society of Agronony, held in Guelph, Canada, was based on Scheckel's outstanding research and teaching achievements at UD.

Scheckel's research centers on understanding the molecular form, bioavailability and mobility of the trace element, nickel, in soil and water environments.

"Specifically, my research focused on the kinetics and mechanisms of the formation and dissolution of nickel surface precipitants on clay minerals and oxides using macroscopic, spectroscopic and microscopic techniques," says Scheckel.

"I am indeed pleased that Kirk Scheckel was recognized for his outstanding achievements in research and teaching," says Dr. Donald Sparks, Distinguished Professor of Soil Chemistry and chair of the department of plant and soil sciences. "His research has greatly contributed to our understanding of the fate of toxic metals in soil and water environments. And he has served as a fine mentor to a number of our undergraduate students."

Scheckel, who grew up in a farming community in Iowa, earned his undergraduate degree in agronomy from the Iowa State University. He began his graduate studies at UD in January 1996.

"I had heard about the graduate program in environmental soil chemistry from the faculty at Iowa State University," says Scheckel. "Some of my professors suggested applying here because of my research interests and because of the reputation of UD."

Scheckel expects to complete his Ph.D. program at UD in the spring of 2000. He hopes to work in an academic setting after graduation, so he can continue to teach and do research.


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