CSU, Chico News

Graduate Student Selected for Public Policy Award

Date: 02-24-2015

Sarah Langford
Public Affairs

California State University, Chico graduate student Taylor Herren has been selected for the 2015 American Institute of Biological Sciences’ (AIBS) Emerging Public Policy Leadership Award.

Herren, who is pursuing a master’s in biology, is one of two recipients of the award, which recognizes biology graduate students demonstrating an interest in and aptitude for making contributions to science and science policy.

She joins Kellyann Jones-Jamtgaard, a doctoral candidate in microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics at the University of Kansas Medical Center, in receiving the award.

“Each year we are impressed with the applications we receive for this award,” said AIBS interim co-executive director Robert Gropp in a news release. “It is heartening to see how many graduate students around the country are committed to making a difference in the world by bridging the divide that too often exists between science and good public policy.”

Herren has been active in state policy, making dozens of trips to lawmakers’ offices and to attend legislative committee meetings on funding for science education and research throughout the CSU.

On campus, she has worked to increase support for undergraduate research opportunities and played a leading role in a campaign that resulted in the CSU board of trustees adopting a systemwide sustainability policy in 2014. The policy outlines efficiency goals in food, energy, water, procurement and building activities.

Herren serves on the board of directors for the California State Student Association, a student advocacy group, and is the president of Associated Students Inc., a CSU, Chico auxiliary. She received her bachelor’s degree in animal science from the University in 2014.

Herren and Jones-Jamtgaard will travel to Washington, D.C., in May to meet with their respective congressional delegations. They will also participate in a training program on communicating with policymakers and a briefing on the federal budget for scientific research. These events coincide with the Biological and Ecological Sciences Coalition’s (BESC) annual congressional visits day.

The winners will also receive a one-year membership in AIBS, which includes a subscription to the scientific journal BioScience.

AIBS is a professional scientific organization dedicated to informing and leading research, education and policymaking in the life sciences.