Making Ideas into Realities

By Sara Albertson

Bees and the biodiversity of the planet, improving the efficiency and quality of dairy producers and providing analysis into the political and historic hypocrisy surrounding Utah’s immigration policy. These are only a few of the research projects going on here at Utah State University, giving opportunities to many students and providing experience.

“Our university is certainly recognized on a national scale. We have a huge college that has a lot of diversified research. We have a lot of collaboration with many different institutions, both federal and state. So part of doing research is networking and connecting with other people,” said Jonathan Koch.

Koch is a graduate student in the science department studying the biodiversity of our planet and its correlation with bees.

“Most of what I do is studying the evolution and ecology of insects, and I just happened to study a bumble bee,” Koch said.

Koch’s Ignite presentation discussed the importance of bee’s pollination and their effect on the environment. Specifically the decline of some of the more predominant pollinators that produce up to one-third of the food that people eat.

“Many of our monocultures are not suitable for bees, and if they are, we spray them with chemicals which are found to be very toxic,” Koch said in his Ignite presentation during Research Week.

Ignite is a pro