Baulch, an associate professor and the assistant director academic (internal) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) School of Environment and Sustainability, said being named to the RSC College of New Scholars is a great achievement.
“It’s a really big honour to have my work today recognized in this way,” Baulch said. “It gives an opportunity to promote and voice some of the really important issues we see as a society where it relates to our waters.”
The RSC is a Canada-wide organization which awards membership and support to exceptional individuals in the field of research and academia, and recognizes specific high-level achievement.
The RSC College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists is intended to recognize researchers who have “begun demonstrating leading scholarly, research or artistic excellence within 15 years of having completed their post-doctoral program or its equivalent,” according to the RSC website.
Baulch’s research focuses primarily on the societal tradeoffs of maintaining and using bodies of fresh water, such as lakes and wetlands in Saskatchewan. Originally from Ontario, Baulch’s self-described annual tradition for many years is floating in Lake Huron.
It’s one of the things that first interested Baulch in water as an area of research and brought to her attention the state of Saskatchewan’s lakes.
“We talk a lot about trying to maintain lakes as swimmable, drinkable and fishable,” she said. “And what we see — certainly in the Prairies — is a crisis around that.”
By analyzing how lands, wetlands, and lakes are managed and utilized, Baulch’s work hopes to answer questions about better water treatment, land management, and remediation to tackle issues of water quality.
Researchers must be nominated to be considered for a position in the College of New Scholars. Baulch credited her mentors and colleagues at USask for their support in her bid to become a member of the college.
Now recognized as a member of the College of New Scholars, Baulch said she feels “reinvigorated” to push her research forward.
“It’s incredible to work in an environment of such support, and I’ve had mentors who have really backed me, supported me, valued me, and I think that speaks to the team environment we have and aspire to,” she said. “That’s so important for working on interdisciplinary issues like issues of water.”
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