Friday, May 19, 2017

Allison Bleistein named Outstanding Senior in Biology

Allison Bleistein
Allison M. Bleistein, a biology, environmental option major, was named outstanding senior in biology. Allison has been  very active in undergraduate research. She has conducted research at the Northeast Fishery Center and as a field study student at the Wallops Island National Wildlife Refuge. Allison interned at the Chincoteague Bay Field Station and at Clyde Peeling’s Reptiland, where she gained experience in animal husbandry. Allison is a campus leader receiving leadership certification by Bloomsburg University’s Center for Leadership and Engagement.  Her outstanding achievements have been recognized by a host of honors and awards including dean’s list each semester and selection for membership in The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the Alpha Lambda Delta national Academic Honor Society, and the Tri-Beta Biology Honor Society. She is a recipient of the Phi Kappa Phi Outstanding Freshman Award. Allison was recognized for her scholarship, leadership and service by Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges. Outside the classroom, Allison is involved with the Chillisquaque Limestone Watershed Association and the Quest Outdoor Leadership Program.  She organized a Community Action Day event in Greenbackville, VA where she led volunteers in various conservation activities. She recently accepted a Wildlife Research Technician position with a USFWS Biologist in UL Bend National Wildlife Refuge, Montana. She will be heading out there in June to assist with a black-footed ferret/prairie dog recovery program. Black-footed ferrets are the most endangered mammal in North America, and are an obligate predator of prairie dogs. Both populations have been hit hard by the sylvatic plague; a bacterial infection transmitted primarily by fleas. The USGS and National Wildlife Health Center have created an oral sylvatic plague vaccine as a pre-emptive method for controlling the plague in prairie dogs. Allison’s job will include distributing vaccine-laden baits, trapping prairie dogs, collecting blood, flea, hair, and whisker samples, ear and PIT tagging, and using GIS and GPS units to map colonies. Allison’s long term goals are to obtain a master’s degree in wildlife management, to contribute to ongoing conservation efforts, and to focus her research on large mammal ecology.