Larry Robinson, professor of Florida A&M University’s Environmental Science Institute has been selected to be one of sixteen engineers and scientists to serve a three year term on the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) and Science Technology Education Advisory Commitee (STEAC).
A recent press release by FAMU public relations officials said NEON is a National Science Foundation (NSF) designed to study long-term and large-scale ecological change. It is sponsored network of permanent and mobile research facilities, which will transform ecological research nationwide by enhancing knowledge of economic problems.
Robinson said this job is important to him because it allows him to get in on the ground floor of a major innovative system in environmental science for not only the nation, but perhaps the world.
“Nothing of this scale has been built to look at the types of problems around the continent as this system would allow,” Robinson said. “It’s really an honor to be among the scientists selected to be on the ground floor of this new transformative opportunity.”
Robinson will be part of the committee that will provide advice on the design of this facility; in particular to ensure the system provides the optimum resources to finance.
“We will be doing research on these facilities for the next thirty years or longer,” Robinson said.
As a committee member, Robinson said he wants to make sure that the research and education components are emphasized so that students will have an opportunity to access
the data and study problems that might be occurring in areas that are of concern even though the student does not have to be in that particular place.
Robinson said accessibility of information, data, and the facilities, for all people, and all types of students like those at FAMU, is something he wants to make sure occurs to put this system in design and use.
He said he believes the facility will benefit FAMU students and the university as a whole.
“There will be opportunities for students to conduct research,” Robinson said. “There will be opportunities for faculty to utilize the facilities for instruction.”
Aaron White, 29, a Ph.D. candidate, is proud of his professor’s accomplishment.
“I’m really excited to hear that,” White said. “He’s an excellent scientist of the highest caliber.”
White has been a student of Robinson’s for two years but has known him since he entered the environmental science program in 2002.
White describes Robinson as an excellent adviser, great professor and a wonderful mentor.
Robinson mentions he will employ himself as an agent for students like White.
“I will bring back things I have learned to share in their research and the classroom experiences here at FAMU,” Robinson said.
Makola Abdullah, dean and director of the College of Engineering Sciences, Technology and Agriculture (CESTA) said he is very proud of Robinson’s accomplishment and excited about the opportunities it will present FAMU.
“I’m very excited about the opportunities it will present FAMU. Professor Robinson who’s in such a high ranking position in the international science foundation, which recognizes the prestigious for the agency in the country.”