Photograph by Prof. Lorraine Cox
October 5, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
Each year the Kelly Adirondack Center sponsors the work of Summer Research Fellows as they examine diverse topics that make the Adirondacks unique. The students interview experts in their fields, work in the Adirondack Research Library using books and collections to examine the history of the Adirondacks, and conduct field research beside faculty. On October 5, they will present their findings along with the themes that have developed in their work. The following are this year’s Summer Fellows.
As the Adirondacks has a predominantly white population, there have recently been efforts to bring more diversity to the area. However, in doing so, it is important to ensure that BIPOC folks (blacks, indigenous, and other people of color) will actually be welcomed into the region. With this in mind, Alyssa’s research delved into the history of issues with diversity in the Adirondacks, how these issues manifest in present day, and what is being done to make the Adirondacks more welcoming for the future.
Sarah was investigating the use of stable isotope analysis as a method for determining previous tick hosts. With tick-borne diseases being the most common vector-borne diseases in the United States, a better understanding is needed of disease transmission ecology and tick population dynamics. To conduct her study, she trapped tick-infested small mammals from the Henry G. Reist Wildlife Sanctuary and the Albany Pine Bush, held them in the lab, and enriched their diets with nitrogen. She hopes that studying the spike (or lack thereof) of 15N in the tick’s isotopic signature might allow her to determine their most recent host.
Jacob’s project is a website showcasing dams in the Adirondacks. Dams are an important feature in the park’s history and his site allows people to learn where dams are around them and some information about each. With this project he hopes to collect data from the community so everyone can have a stronger understanding of these features.
From Antiquity until the late 1930s, skiing was an important part of Adirondack life. This past summer, Sebastian researched the history of skiing in the Adirondack Park. His work documents its beginnings as a necessity and its transition to an important recreational sport. It highlights the creation of private clubs and the role they played in making skiing the sport we know today.