From left: Jacob Katz, Knut Vanderbush, Obioha Chijioke
From left: Jacob Katz, Knut Vanderbush, Obioha Chijioke

Three Riverdale students have won $6,700 in research grants for a study of the epigenetic adaptations of Picea, commonly known as spruce trees.

The grants include $3,200 from the Black Rock Forest Consortium‘s David Redden Conservation Science Fund, $2,500 from the Marjot Foundation, and $1,000 from the Hudson River Environmental Society.

Jacob Katz ’20, Obioha Chijioke ’20, and Knut Vanderbush ’20 will share the grants for the research. The students are among a group of Riverdale students and faculty who have traveled to Alaska the last two summers to collect needle samples from white spruce trees growing at different latitudes within the Arctic treeline.

This summer, the students plan to investigate spruce trees growing in the New York area, which is the southern ecological boundary of the species, to see whether there are similarities in how the trees are adapting to climate change.

In 2013, two Riverdale students were awarded a grant by The Marjot Foundation for a study of the physical changes in Bronx River mollusks caused by environmental stress. The Lisman Laboratory has published two papers in connection with this research, which is ongoing.