Schafer-Post Graduate Student Research in Systematics
The Schafer-Post Graduate Student Research in Systematics Fund is available to North Dakota State University students who are conducting research on insect systematics. The original purpose of the fund was to pay for the publication of graduate student theses pertaining to insect systematics. The objectives of the fund were broadened in 2003 so that funds could be used in support of graduate student research in systematics that will lead to publication.
Dr. Richard L. Post was a Professor of Entomology and Curator of the North Dakota State Insect Reference Collection from 1946 to 1976. He worked primarily on thrips (Thysanoptera), but was a keen collector of all insects from our area. He had great influence on many students who have published on the insects of North Dakota through this fund. Mr. Harold Schafer was a North Dakota businessman who became friends with Post. In 1960, Schafer agreed to provide $600 to help Post publish a publication on the "Butterflies of North Dakota." Soon thereafter, the two decided to create a fund to help publish similar work on other insects of North Dakota. Schafer originally donated $2,000 to this fund which was matched by Post. Over the next few years, further donations, and monies received from selling publications helped the fund to grow to over $10,000. This fund is now maintained by the NDSU Development Foundation.
The principal is not spent, but is allowed to draw interest. The interest is then used to support Graduate Student Research in Insect Systematics. This money has supported the publication of a number of manuscripts, primarily concerning insects from the upper Great Plains. This fund was very active up through 1984, then became inactive. In 1999, we began actively publishing graduate student work in the form of journal articles. We will, however, in the near future begin publishing larger works again. Many of the older works are still available for a minimal cost, reprints of the newer journal articles are available free of charge, future book size works will be available for a modest price (see list of available publications).
We have recently had several students working on a number of interesting groups. Paul Tinerella's (with Dr. Ralph Gunderson) book on the Water Boatmen (Heteroptera: Corixidae) has recently been published. He (along with Dr. Robert Gordon) also worked on the aquatic beetles (Coleoptera) of North Dakota. Patrick Beauzay has worked on the Tiger Beetles of North Dakota (Coleoptera: Carabidae: Cicindelinae). Becky Wenzel has worked on the Bees (Hymenoptera) of North Dakota and western Minnesota. Also, Jerry Fauske, a Research Specialist in our Department has worked on several great projects including the Orthoptera of the Northern Great Plains, the Moths of North Dakota, and the Common Flea Beetles of North Dakota. Jerry and all of these students have also collaborated on ecology projects concerning insects of the tallgrass prairies. And finally, David Rider, Professor, supervises these students, and he works on the systematics of the Pentatomidae (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) and related families.
Request for Donations:
Never has there been a greater need for work in systematics, and yet support for systematics is still relatively limited. The success of this project depends upon the availability of funding. We hope to increase the size of this fund in the future through publication sales. We will also gladly accept donations to this fund. If you would like to support systematics on the insects of the upper Great Plains, please contact Dr. David Rider.