USGS Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Honors Student Named 2018 Goldwater Scholar

Cooperative Research Unit Corner

USGS Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Honors Student Named 2018 Goldwater Scholar

A USGS Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit student is among 211 students from across the nation to be recognized as Barry Goldwater Scholars, earning the highest undergraduate award of its type for the fields of the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering.

Guy Eroh checks Bear River cutthroat trout as part of his internship with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Guy Eroh, one of the winners, is a junior from Portland, Oregon, who is majoring in ecology. But he’s also earning a master’s degree in forest resources from the University of Georgia Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources. Eroh is working under Dr. Cecil Jennings, Unit Leader at the USGS Georgia Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit.

Eroh is investigating methods to increase the hatching success of hatchery-reared walleye, which is an increasingly popular sportfish in north Georgia. Specifically, he is experimentally evaluating treatment regimens— four dosages and two exposure times—of hydrogen peroxide to disinfect walleyes eggs, which can become infected with a toxic fungus under certain rearing conditions. The results will be used to modify hatchery procedures used by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to improve the consistency and efficacy of walleye production for supplementing populations within the fish’s Georgia range.

Eroh intends to pursue a doctorate in a biological science with an emphasis in molecular genetics and fisheries science. His long-range aspiration is to rebuild and sustain robust, diverse fish populations through the application of molecular genetics to the science of fisheries management. At University of Georgia, Eroh’s coursework and research experiences have been tailored to emphasize the interplay among genetics, fisheries science and ecology. He currently conducts research with University of Georgia faculty Jennings, Robert Bringolf, Jean Williams-Woodward, and Dr. Alvin Campus to maximize hatch success of walleye eggs. He was first author on a peer-reviewed paper published in the journal PLOS One for his research on the genetic basis of grey-morphism in the Southern right whale. Eroh also interned for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and the Center for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science in the UK.

Eroh, a Foundation Fellow, served as president of 5 Rivers Club at the University of Georgia and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, Trout Unlimited, the Upper Oconee Watershed Network and the Georgia and Oregon chapters of the American Fisheries Society. He received the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Wildlife Leadership Award and is an avid runner and a SCUBA-certified diver.

The scholarship recognizes exceptional sophomores and juniors across the nation. This year, awardees were selected from a field of 1,280 undergraduates and were nominated by campus representatives from among 2,000 colleges and universities nationwide. Of this year’s Goldwater Scholars, 29 are mathematics and computer science majors, 142 are majoring in the natural sciences, and 40 are majoring in engineering. Many are majoring in a combination of mathematics, science, engineering and computer science. In addition to Eroh, two other University of Georgia students received the honor.

“I am so thrilled for each of these students,” said David S. Williams, associate provost and director of the Honors Program, who serves as the University of Georgia campus faculty representative for the Goldwater Scholarship. “All of them richly deserve recognition by the Goldwater Foundation for their hard work and research excellence. I think it speaks volumes that they came to University of Georgia from across the country because they knew about the quality of our undergraduate research program and the strong support that faculty members provide to our students.”

The ONB features articles from Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units across the country. Working with key cooperators, including WMI, Units are leading exciting, new, fish and wildlife research projects that we believe our readers will appreciate reading about. This article was written by: Stephanie Schupska, Writer, University of Georgia, and edited by Dawn Childs, Information Specialist, USGS Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units.

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Photo Credit
Utah Department of Natural Resources
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June 15, 2018