University of Vermont

College of
Engineering and Mathematical Sciences

Associate Dean Melody Burkins appointed to National Academy of Sciences Committee

Release Date: 05-19-2008

Author: Dawn Marie Densmore
Phone: Array Fax: 802-656-8802

Dr. Melody Brown Burkins, Associate Dean in the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences (CEMS), has been appointed to the National Academy of Sciences U.S. National Committee for the Geological Sciences (USNC/GS). Managed by the National Academies' Board on International Scientific Organizations (BISO) in the National Research Council Policy and Global Affairs division, the USNC/GS is composed of a diversity of earth systems scientists from academia, research, government, and industry who have received honors in their field and support the promotion of earth systems science and policy issues in the U.S. and throughout the international community.

"I am extremely pleased to see one of our newest colleagues recognized by the National Academies for her earth and environmental research experience as well as her skill connecting the world of science and policy," said CEMS Dean Domenico Grasso. "Melody's enthusiasm for promoting scientific excellence and applications beyond the walls of academe will be an asset to U.S. National Committee efforts, just as it is for UVM and Vermont."

As one of 20 U.S. National Committees coordinated by the National Academies, the USNC/GS represents U.S. interests to the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS), a member union of the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU). The USNC/GS also acts as the adhering body to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) International Geoscience Programme (IGCP). In August, a USNC member detail will represent U.S. geoscience interests to the 33rd International Geological Congress "Earth System Science: Foundation for Sustainable Development" meeting in Oslo, Norway.

Dr. Burkins received degrees in earth and ecosystems science at Dartmouth College (M.S. and Ph.D.) and Yale University (B.S.) working in hydrogeological modeling, economic geology, and biogeochemical cycling. She served as the 1999-2000 AAAS Congressional Science and Technology Fellow for the Geological Society of America and U.S. Geological Survey before becoming the energy and environment aide to U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy in Washington D.C. At the University of Vermont, Burkins has held multiple research, administrative and service roles advancing priority UVM programs and has advocated for initiatives in sustainable enterprise as well as the role of higher education in economic development.