Waikato Earth Science postgrads win top prizes again
Two postgraduate students from the Waikato University's Department
of Earth Sciences, Dr Haydon Jones and Ms Rachael Standish,
have been awarded elite prizes by the New Zealand Society of
Soil Science for their research.
Dr Jones, now working as a soil scientist for Ensis (formerly
CRI Forest Research ) in Rotorua, has been awarded
the Morice Fieldes Memorial Award for best PhD thesis in soil
science in New Zealand for 2005. The award was made jointly
with a Massey graduate Dr Fabio Moreno . Haydon follows in
the footsteps of last year's winner, Dr John Menneer (now at
AgResearch), also from Waikato University.
Dr Jones worked on developing and testing new methods for
predicting soil properties relevant to pine plantation forestry
management in the Mahurangi area near Warkworth, Northland.
The work, sponsored in part by Dr Tim Payn's sustainable management
group at Ensis, involved soil-landscape modelling and spatial
analysis. Haydon's chief supervisor was Associate Professor
David Lowe, leader of the Soils Group in Earth Sciences.
Dr Lowe said "Dr Jones' thesis was outstanding and it's very
gratifying that the Society has recognised this by making the
award to Haydon. He is the ninth Waikato University graduate
to receive the Fieldes Award , which is a great result considering
we face tough competition every year from specialist soil science
departments at Massey and Lincoln universities".
Rachael Standish, currently working as an environmental scientist
at Tonkin and Taylor in Auckland, was awarded the Sir Theodore
Rigg Memorial Award for her masterate thesis, judged the best
in soil science in New Zealand for 2005. Rachael studied the
contamination of soils and groundwater in the Taupo area by
organochlorine pesticides (such as dieldrin, DDT), which had
been banned in the 1960s. Rachael's award was the ninth to
be made to a Waikato masterate student, and follows that by
another Waikato graduate, Dave Palmer. Currently undertaking
doctoral studies in Earth Science, Dave won the Rigg Award
for his MSc thesis for 2003.
Both Dr Jones and Rachael Standish were presented with their
awards at the N.H. Taylor Memorial Lecture of the New Zealand
Society of Soil Science, a public lecture hosted by the Soils
Group of the Department of Earth Sciences on Friday 18 Nov.