War Eagle Words Student News

October 2016



Avery LambWhen Avery Lamb began her undergraduate research on rain garden plants, she had little idea of where it was going to take her.

Avery, a junior from Dothan, Alabama, majoring in environmental science, was awarded first place in the Bachelor of Science category at the Southern Nursery Association Student Research Competition in Athens, Georgia, in late August.

Avery says she is honored to have received high recognition so early in her career, especially since she is still an undergraduate.

“I am incredibly humbled to receive such an honorable award,” she says. “I would have never imagined I would be performing research so early in my life, and I am grateful for the opportunity.”

Avery’s research included evaluating the growth and physiology of three rain garden plant species grown in two different soil types over two growing seasons.

“For this experiment, I was looking at how well these plants functioned and survived in these two different soil types,” Avery says. “Auburn is located at a wonderful geographic location, because we have access to different soil types so close to each other.”

Although Avery is just a student, her work ethic speaks volumes about who she is as a person.

Dr. Amy Wright, the College of Agriculture’s interim associate dean for instruction, is proud of how much Avery has accomplished.

“Avery is such an excellent and extremely organized student,” Wright says. “She is very good at performing independent research for her projects and a quick learner. I am so happy she is getting the recognition she deserves for the amount of work she’s put into this project.”

Entrants in the competition were ranked and graded based on the information gathered and researched for the experiment, on the quality of the paper submitted prior to the oral competition and how well they presented information and answered questions following their presentations.

Avery was inspired by one of her Dothan High School teachers, Jarrett Maddox, to pursue a degree in environmental science, and she says it is one of the best decisions she has ever made.

“When I was taking Mr. Maddox’s AP environmental science class, something just hit me,” she says. “His passion for environmental science inspired me to want to continue my education in that field. I am absolutely loving what I am doing.”

On campus, Avery is a resident assistant for Magnolia Hall in the Village; a member of the Crop, Soil and Environmental Science Club; and a student worker in the soil chemistry lab. She knew early on that Auburn would be her school of choice to pursue her degree.

“When it was time to start looking for a place to go to college, Auburn just seemed like the natural place to go,” Avery says. “Both of my parents went to school here, and I grew up coming to the football games. It just feels like home.”