SETAC Globe - Environmental Quality Through Science
18 May 2017
Volume 18 Issue 5

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Regional Spotlight: Midwest SETAC

Dawn Perkins, Immediate Past President, Midwest Chapter of SETAC

The 25th Annual SETAC Midwest Chapter Meeting was held from 20–22 March 2017 at the University of St. Thomas, located in beautiful and vibrant downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota. The theme for the 2017 meeting was “Sustainable Resource Management: From Urban to Rural.”

The meeting kicked off with a half-day short course on “Data Management, Statistical Management, and Graphics Using R,” followed by an informal evening meet-n-greet at a local pub. The main proceedings began the next morning with a full day of platform presentations, plenary speakers and concluded with an evening poster session.

Our first keynote speaker was Jeffrey Peterson, Director of the Water Resources Center at the University of Minnesota, who spoke to more than 80 attendees about the “Water–Food Nexus.” Later, Deborah Manning, PE from the Metropolitan Council Environmental Services, spoke about water reuse and sustainability within the Twin Cities region. To close out the day, a poster social with hors d’oeuvres and cash bar was held to further highlight current research occurring within the Midwest region.

The next morning was filled with additional platform presentations, and the meeting wrapped up with our chapter’s business meeting, where we enjoyed lunch, conducted Board of Director elections and held a raffle to raise funds to support student travel awards. We also announced the winners of the Best Student Platform and Poster Presentations Awards. This year, a panel of 18 environmental scientists judged 26 student presentations to determine the winners. Thanks to the very generous annual support and sponsorship by 3M, SC Johnson & Sons and SETAC North America, we handed out US$1,000 to each category’s first-place winner and US$200 to each honorable mention. These awards will be used to defray travel costs to present their research at this year’s SETAC North America 38th Annual Meeting, which will be held from 12–16 November 2017 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The Midwest Regional Chapter’s Best Student Presentations include:


First Place: Lina Wang, St. Cloud State University, “Fathead Minnow Diaries: How a Multi-Generational Exposure to an Urban Contaminant of Emerging Concern Mixture Impacted Apical Endpoints”

Honorable Mention: Jon Doering, University of Saskatchewan, “In Vitro Function of the Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Predicts In Vivo Sensitivity of Oviparous Vertebrates to Dioxin-like Compounds”


First Place: Amanda Stenzel, University of Wisconsin – La Crosse, “Does Triclosan Disrupt the Thyroid Hormone Axis in Zebrafish?”

Honorable Mention: Hannah Link, University of St. Thomas, “Novel Assessment of the Toxicity of Natural Water Impacted by Petroleum Hydrocarbons at the National Crude Oil Biodegradation and Natural Attenuation Research Site Near Bemidji, MN, USA”

In addition to the Best Student Presentation Awards, the Midwest Chapter supported our student chapter members by distributing more than US$2,300 of travel awards to 14 students.

The conference was made possible thanks to the generous support of several sponsors, including SC Johnson & Sons, 3M, SETAC North America, Agilent Technologies, Exponent Inc., Great Lakes Environmental Center, University of St. Thomas, and the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse.

We would like to thank everyone who attended the Midwest Chapter meeting and made this conference a success! We also want to thank the many volunteers who worked diligently behind the scenes.

Planning is underway for our 26th Annual Meeting, so stay tuned for details on the Midwest Chapter website. We hope to see you in the spring of 2018!

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