Project Timeline


October 6, 2018 – Bernard Field Station, Claremont, CA. First meeting to begin building So Cal Research for Undergrads in Biology (SCRUB) Net an undergraduate ecological research network focused on southern California ecosystems. The meeting was attended by 19 researchers from 14 institutions. The litter decomposition committee is formed to carry out first multi-site research project.  

January 22, 2019 – Submission of RCN-UBE NSF incubator grant for the development of the Southern California Undergraduate Terrestrial Ecological Research Network (SCUTER-NET). This proposal was not funded but was given a “Meritorious” rating with encouragement to resubmit. 

February 2019 – Litter decomposition experiment begins with PIs and undergraduates at seven cooperating institutions burying litter bags under different types of ground cover. 

April 2019 – Litter decomposition bags are retrieved, and sample analysis begins.  

May 3, 2019 – Southern California Academy of Sciences. Erin Questad moderated a special session on terrestrial ecology with undergraduate presenters from institutions within the network, highlighting the outstanding and diverse research of these students.  Meyer began the session with a talk introducing the network. 

November 2019 – Sample analysis of litter bag material and soil samples completed. Data analysis and writing begins.  

January 21, 2020 – Submission of RCN-UBE NSF incubator grant for the development of the Research Experiences in Southern California for Undergraduate Ecologists Network (RESCUE-NET). As the name change reflects, the grant activities are not restricted to terrestrial research. 

Summer, 2020 NSF RCN-UBE incubator grant for RESCUE-NET receives funding

Fall, 2020 – Marty Meyer and steering committee members met multiple times over ZOOM to work on developing the network including designing the initial survey that was sent out to potential participants.  

January 5, 2021 – Survey sent out to potential participants to elucidate important aspects of the network that could alleviate barriers to participation and to promote productive and positive outcomes.

May 7, 2021 – Southern California Academy of Sciences. Marty Meyer presents the initial results of the litter decomposition study. “Landscaping matters: decomposition processes in five common habitat types across southern California” at the Southern California Academy of Sciences Meeting.  Co-authors were from seven collaborating institutions, G. Vourlitis, E. van der Veen, S. Cangahuala, C. Fissore, J. K. Abraham, A. Wright, E. Wood, D. Vanoverbeke, N. Karnovsky. 

May 26, 2021 – Zoom meeting, 26 participants from 21 institutions attended a virtual meeting to learn about and discuss RESCUE-NET. 

June 16, 2021 – Zoom discussion of CURES, MURES and MSRPs amongst participants. Fifteen people attended from 11 institutions. 

July 7, 2021 – Zoom discussion focused exclusively on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in RESCUE-NET. Eleven faculty from 9 institutions attended the meeting.

July 22, 2021 – Zoom meeting focused on solidifying CUREs, MUREs and MSRPs. Thirteen faculty from 8 institutions attended. 

October 30, 2021 – Zoom meeting to discuss the educational research opportunities we would like to implement during the first three years of network. Sixteen faculty from 11 institutions attended.  

November 3, 2021 – Five faculty members from 4 institutions participated in a 4 hour workshop provided by AdvanceGeo to develop a Code of Conduct for RESCUE-NET.

January 25, 2022 – RESCUE-NET implementation grant submitted to NSF. 

August 1, 2022 – RESCUE-NET implementation grant has been funded by NSF for next 5 years.

October 11, 2022 – RESCUE-NET wide online welcome, information and planning meeting.

October 14, 2022 – Planning meeting for Leaf Heat Tolerances in Native Plants in Southern California CURE. Planning continues through December.

October 29, 2022 — MSRP Mulch Matters! kicks off with meeting of students and faculty from 6 participating institutions.

January 2023 – The CURE: Leaf Heat Tolerances in Native Plants in Southern California begins at 11 participating institutions.

February 24, 2023 – Information session on 2023 – 2024 MURE: Stable isotope ecology.

March 22, 2023 – Information session on 2023-2024 MSRP: Investigating eco-evo changes over time and space using herbariums.

April 26, 2023 – Information session on 2023-2024 CURE: Using stable isotopes to compare water use efficiencies in natural and urban systems.

May 5, 2023 – RESCUE-net students and faculty attend and make presentations at SCAS, the annual meeting of the Southern California Academy of Sciences.

May 2023 – Assessment of Leaf Heat Tolerance CURE and Mulch Matters! MSRP.

August 26, 2023 – RESCUE-Net wide held meeting for all interested and engaged faculty at Pomona College. It was attended by 22 participants from 11 institutions.

Fall 2023 – New MSRP and MURE projects are starting and planning for the CURE in spring 2024 has begun! If you are interested contact project leaders soon!

Spring 2024 – isoCURE begins at 6 institutions and will continue in fall 2024 at one more.

May 4, 2024 – RESCUE-net undergraduate students present their research and host a Q&A panel in a RESCUE-net Symposium at the Southern California Academy of Sciences.