Event to celebrate entomology research, faculty

Department has raised$3.5 out of $15 million goal for honeybee campaign



The WSU College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences will hold an event on Aug. 31 to celebrate accomplishments of faculty and research. Work on the honeybee preservation campaign will be showcased.

JAKOB THORINGTON, Evergreen reporter

The College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS) will host a celebration of the Department of Entomology and research at 3 p.m. on Aug. 31 at Ensminger Pavilion.

Laura Lavine, chair of the Department of Entomology, said the event is an opportunity to celebrate alumni and friends of the department, entomology donors and the work that goes into the study of insects.

She said the department has recently received nearly $7 million in donations and gifts. The department has raised $3.5 million out of its $15 million goal toward its campaign to protect honeybees and other pollinators.

Endowments given to the college go toward the M.T. James Entomological Museum, student scholarships and honeybee research, Lavine said. There are over 17 active funds accepting endowments.

The department works toward biological control of pest management across the state, pesticide issues and education of basic life sciences using insects, according to its website.

CAHNRS Dean André-Denis Wright will host the event alongside CAHNRS Alumni and Friends.

The celebration will give students and alumni the opportunity to mingle and network, Lavine said. Honeybee observation and work showcases will be available as well as a tour of the museum.

“It’ll be great for students and faculty to see how much people care about the department,” she said. “I can’t wait to get everyone together.”

Richard Zack, professor of entomology and associate dean, said the department is growing and expanding and he hopes supporters can see it is alive and well.

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History postdoctorate Elizabeth Murray will join the department in February as a professor and director of the museum, Lavine said. She will also attend the event.

According to Murray’s website, she reconstructs the evolutionary relationships of different groups of insects. Her current research is focused on the relationships and evolution of ants, bees and wasps.