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May 1 / Zach Kilgore

RISEUP 2015 starts May 20th!

In 2014, RISEUP interns kayaked on Belle Isle in Detroit as a team-building exercise.

In 2014, RISEUP interns kayaked on Belle Isle in Detroit as a team-building exercise.

In just a few weeks, four talented undergraduate students from universities across the United States will begin their research on sustainability in Detroit as a part of Wayne State University’s RISEUP program: Nathan Christie of Wayne State University, Jamie Gonzalez of Cosumnes River College, Andrea Pugh of Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University, and Bretty Zeuner of Eastern Michigan University.

RISEUP, which stands for Research Internships for a Sustainable Environment with Undergraduate Participation, allows students to conduct research alongside mentors with experience in the field. This year, 133 students applied for RISEUP with a choice of 13 projects. Of those, four projects were chosen: heavy metal mapping in urban gardens with Dr. Larry Lemke, the role of environmental education and community outreach at the Belle Isle Aquarium with Dr. Alisa V. Moldavanova, the effects of green infrastructure on neighborhood satisfaction and health with Dr. Natalie Sampson, and sustainable small harbor management strategies with Dr. Sanjiv Sinha and Dr. Donald Carpenter.

Last year’s projects included assessing Great Lakes areas of concern, the environment of a post-industrial city, and improving water management in the Great Lakes basin.

In addition to completing a total of 480 hours of research and training, interns will write full length reports for online publication, present their projects at a symposium, participate in team-building activities including kayaking on Belle Isle in Detroit, and attend biweekly workshops. By the end of the summer, they will have received valuable experience in statistics, social and economic analysis, dispute resolution, sustainability, and scientific and public communication.

RISEUP is directed by Dr. Jeffrey Ram of Wayne State University. For more information, contact or go to