Thank you everyone, for your input regarding staff support for entomological collections at universities. I pieced together feedback in a spreadsheet, here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KJtnUPiB-wNpvCT88qKaK-zZUFmvFwi4/view?usp=sharing

A couple things stood out. About half of these positions get 50% of their support from extension funds, and the other half get 100% from university/college/department funds. Overall, most of the entomological collections have a permanent hard money position for collections work (mostly as collection managers). Another thing that stood out was the relative lack of support for new faculty members supervising a collection, and several comments basically that they expect funding to cease once they retire :(

Anyways, there is a good diversity of creative strategies that folks have been using for funding entomological collections.

Paul


On Sat, Feb 10, 2018 at 1:00 AM, ECN-L automatic digest system <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
There are 6 messages totaling 7049 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

  1. Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S.
     universities (4)
  2. vermiculite (2)

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 13:32:45 +0000
From:    Gregory Zolnerowich <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities

If Paul has 0% appointment to work in and develop the collection as the curator, what’s the incentive to do so regarding annual evaluation?

Cheers,

Greg Z.


____________________
Gregory Zolnerowich
Dept. of Entomology
123 Waters Hall
1603 Old Claflin Place
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506

------------------------------

Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 13:54:15 +0000
From:    "Skelley, Paul" <Paul.Skelley@FRESHFROMFLORIDA.COM>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities

I've been reading the various comments, and Chris's note stuck a cord. "Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand..." Most of our collections have their roots in extension and diagnostics (or teaching diagnostics). It appears that most of our positions also have split responsibilities : diagnostics/extension, research/teaching, museum care. Our administrations have forgotten their roots and the reasons our forefathers developed collections. Convincing administrations of the value of morphological vouchers as the base for needed identifications, even to allow accurate molecular work for diagnostics, could help. But, if you don't have a diagnostic component to your job, this will all prove problematic.

"Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it." Witchcraft and other lost arts are subjects for another essay. Yet, I totally agree with Chris, many of us may be the last of the druids.

Paul

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Paul E. Skelley, Ph.D., C.P.M.
Entomology Section Administrator
Florida State Collection of Arthropods
Division of Plant Industry/Entomology
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Assistant Head Editor: Insecta Mundi

Desk (352) 395-4678
Fax (352) 395-4614
Receptionist (352) 395-4700
[log in to unmask]com

The Doyle Conner Building
1911 SW 34th St
Gainesville, Florida 32608 USA
or
P.O.Box 147100
Gainesville, Florida 32614-7100, USA

www.FreshFromFlorida.com<http://www.freshfromflorida.com/>

Please note that Florida has a broad public records law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).
Most written communications to or from state employees are public records obtainable
by the public upon request. Emails sent to me at this email address may be considered
public and will only be withheld from disclosure if deemed confidential pursuant to the
laws of the State of Florida.



From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Christopher Carlton
Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:00 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities


I responded to Paul off list about this, but just to point out a couple of things. First, as representatives of several collections have noted, current management/curator support may be in place, but concerns exist about what happens when the current person retires. This is typical of long term uncertainty about continuity of these sorts of positions, and nothing new. Second, at least at land grant institutions, the role of collections and experienced curators in diagnostic roles is directly relevant to the extension service mission at those institutions.



The extension contribution of collection manager/curator position is vastly under appreciated. Thus, extension support for those positions at many land grant universities is an underutilized revenue stream for support of those positions. Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand. If the extension budget is not at least partially allocated to supporting a well curated collection representing the regional fauna, then something is wrong with the mindset at that institution.



Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it.



Chris


Chris Carlton, Ph. D.
Director, Carlton Astronomy Campus
Professor of Entomology, Emeritus
Department of Entomology, Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, LA USA 70803

&lt;a href=http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/CrAstCmpMSkey.html&gt;







________________________________
From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>> on behalf of Bayless, Victoria M. <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]EDU>>
Sent: Thursday, February 8, 2018 4:23:10 PM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities


Hello all,

I am the Curator/Collections manager at The Louisiana State Arthropod Museum.  This position is full-time staff, hard money,  ½ research and ½ extension.  Our Department of Entomology faculty systematist also serves as the Director of the Museum.  Over the years we have had soft money research associate assistants, but none at the current time.

Victoria



Victoria Moseley Bayless

Curator, Louisiana State Arthropod Museum

Insect Diagnostician, LSU AgCenter

Past-President, Coleopterists Society

Louisiana State University

Dept. of Entomology, LSB-404

Baton Rouge, LA  70803-1710

Phone: 225-578-1838

www.lsuinsects.org<http://www.lsuinsects.org/>

www.lsuagcenter.com<http://www.lsuagcenter.com/>

www.coleopsoc.org<http://www.coleopsoc.org/>









Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:48 AM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



On Feb 7, 2018, at 3:16 PM, Paul Marek <[log in to unmask]<mailto:br[log in to unmask]>> wrote:



Hi everyone,

This question is mostly directed toward directors/curators of entomological collections at U.S. universities.

If your collection has a permanent position assigned to it (e.g. collections manager, curatorial assistant, technician, undergraduate, GRA-i.e. other than than the director/curator), how do you pay for this position? Is it through extension, soft money, department/college, university?

The Virginia Tech Insect Collection (VTEC, collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>) received a NSF CSBR in 2015 that reinvigorated the collection after ~20 years, spurring digitization, staff/student hires, infrastructure improvements, and consequently an increase in loans, data inquiries, research, and usage of the material. The CSBR award is ending this year, and I want to keep the momentum of the natural history collection going. I am therefore in the process of finding support for the VTEC. We have received some private donations, which are great, but they're sporadic and have only started to replenish a small gift account. The collection, after the NSF award ends, would then be only supported by a department-supported phone line and a faculty position (me as curator, but with a 0% appointment to work in the collection).

I recently requested a permanent position for the VTEC from our college dean and department head. They were generally receptive about the idea, but wanted to hear how other universities pay for these positions.

Thank you for any information or advice you have.

Paul Marek



--
Paul E. Marek
Assistant Professor
Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech
Price Hall, Rm 216A (MC0319)
170 Drillfield Drive
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
(540) 231-5653
[log in to unmask]<mailto:pmarek@vt.edu>
Lab website: www.jointedlegs.org<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.jointedlegs.org&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=_azLcP7DO6bJY32wsUzYYoFqi79pegd9RQ9D37mi_Fs&e=>
VT Insect Collection: collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>


------------------------------

Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 14:42:46 +0000
From:    "Hall, Wesley E - (wehall)" <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities

Chris hit the nail on the head describing my position at the University of Arizona Insect Collection. Half of my position is museum collection management, while the other half is "Insect Diagnostics" as part of the UA College of Agriculture's Cooperative Extension mission. We are the Land Grant university for the state of Arizona, and Insect Diagnostics fills part of that mission. I handle all insect ID'S submitted  to the UA from the public, agriculture, industry, statewide Extension agents, Master Gardeners, state and federal agencies, forensics, veterinary, etc.,. Cooperative Extension has committed to supporting my position .50% to meet our Extension goals, but timely and accurate diagnostics would not be possible without the administrative support of a well-curated and thriving  museum collection.

Cheers,
Gene

Gene Hall
University of Arizona Insect Collection (Manager)
& CALS Cooperative Extension (Insect Diagnostics)
Department of Entomology
1140 E. South Campus Dr.
University of Arizona
Tucson, AZ  85721
Ph: 520.621.6446
Email: [log in to unmask]
UA INSECT COLLECTION: http://www.uainsectcollection.com/
PTILIIDAE: http://tolweb.org/Ptiliidae
ZOOTAXA Subject Editor: STAPHYLINOIDEA: http://www.mapress.com/j/zt/pages/view/Coleoptera
________________________________
From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve <[log in to unmask]> on behalf of Skelley, Paul <Paul.Skelley@FRESHFROMFLORIDA.COM>
Sent: Friday, February 9, 2018 6:54:15 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities


I’ve been reading the various comments, and Chris’s note stuck a cord. “Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand…” Most of our collections have their roots in extension and diagnostics (or teaching diagnostics). It appears that most of our positions also have split responsibilities : diagnostics/extension, research/teaching, museum care. Our administrations have forgotten their roots and the reasons our forefathers developed collections. Convincing administrations of the value of morphological vouchers as the base for needed identifications, even to allow accurate molecular work for diagnostics, could help. But, if you don’t have a diagnostic component to your job, this will all prove problematic.



“Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it.” Witchcraft and other lost arts are subjects for another essay. Yet, I totally agree with Chris, many of us may be the last of the druids.



Paul



++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Paul E. Skelley, Ph.D., C.P.M.

Entomology Section Administrator

Florida State Collection of Arthropods

Division of Plant Industry/Entomology

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services



Assistant Head Editor: Insecta Mundi



Desk (352) 395-4678

Fax (352) 395-4614

Receptionist (352) 395-4700

[log in to unmask]com



The Doyle Conner Building

1911 SW 34th St

Gainesville, Florida 32608 USA

or

P.O.Box 147100

Gainesville, Florida 32614-7100, USA



www.FreshFromFlorida.com<http://www.freshfromflorida.com/>



Please note that Florida has a broad public records law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).

Most written communications to or from state employees are public records obtainable

by the public upon request. Emails sent to me at this email address may be considered

public and will only be withheld from disclosure if deemed confidential pursuant to the

laws of the State of Florida.







From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Christopher Carlton
Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:00 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



I responded to Paul off list about this, but just to point out a couple of things. First, as representatives of several collections have noted, current management/curator support may be in place, but concerns exist about what happens when the current person retires. This is typical of long term uncertainty about continuity of these sorts of positions, and nothing new. Second, at least at land grant institutions, the role of collections and experienced curators in diagnostic roles is directly relevant to the extension service mission at those institutions.



The extension contribution of collection manager/curator position is vastly under appreciated. Thus, extension support for those positions at many land grant universities is an underutilized revenue stream for support of those positions. Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand. If the extension budget is not at least partially allocated to supporting a well curated collection representing the regional fauna, then something is wrong with the mindset at that institution.



Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it.



Chris



Chris Carlton, Ph. D.

Director, Carlton Astronomy Campus

Professor of Entomology, Emeritus

Department of Entomology, Louisiana State University

Baton Rouge, LA USA 70803

&lt;a href=http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/CrAstCmpMSkey.html&gt;









________________________________

From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>> on behalf of Bayless, Victoria M. <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]EDU>>
Sent: Thursday, February 8, 2018 4:23:10 PM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



Hello all,

I am the Curator/Collections manager at The Louisiana State Arthropod Museum.  This position is full-time staff, hard money,  ½ research and ½ extension.  Our Department of Entomology faculty systematist also serves as the Director of the Museum.  Over the years we have had soft money research associate assistants, but none at the current time.

Victoria



Victoria Moseley Bayless

Curator, Louisiana State Arthropod Museum

Insect Diagnostician, LSU AgCenter

Past-President, Coleopterists Society

Louisiana State University

Dept. of Entomology, LSB-404

Baton Rouge, LA  70803-1710

Phone: 225-578-1838

www.lsuinsects.org<http://www.lsuinsects.org/>

www.lsuagcenter.com<http://www.lsuagcenter.com/>

www.coleopsoc.org<http://www.coleopsoc.org/>









Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:48 AM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



On Feb 7, 2018, at 3:16 PM, Paul Marek <[log in to unmask]<mailto:br[log in to unmask]>> wrote:



Hi everyone,

This question is mostly directed toward directors/curators of entomological collections at U.S. universities.

If your collection has a permanent position assigned to it (e.g. collections manager, curatorial assistant, technician, undergraduate, GRA—i.e. other than than the director/curator), how do you pay for this position? Is it through extension, soft money, department/college, university?

The Virginia Tech Insect Collection (VTEC, collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>) received a NSF CSBR in 2015 that reinvigorated the collection after ~20 years, spurring digitization, staff/student hires, infrastructure improvements, and consequently an increase in loans, data inquiries, research, and usage of the material. The CSBR award is ending this year, and I want to keep the momentum of the natural history collection going. I am therefore in the process of finding support for the VTEC. We have received some private donations, which are great, but they're sporadic and have only started to replenish a small gift account. The collection, after the NSF award ends, would then be only supported by a department-supported phone line and a faculty position (me as curator, but with a 0% appointment to work in the collection).

I recently requested a permanent position for the VTEC from our college dean and department head. They were generally receptive about the idea, but wanted to hear how other universities pay for these positions.

Thank you for any information or advice you have.

Paul Marek



--
Paul E. Marek
Assistant Professor
Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech
Price Hall, Rm 216A (MC0319)
170 Drillfield Drive
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
(540) 231-5653
[log in to unmask]<mailto:pmarek@vt.edu>
Lab website: www.jointedlegs.org<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.jointedlegs.org&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=_azLcP7DO6bJY32wsUzYYoFqi79pegd9RQ9D37mi_Fs&e=>
VT Insect Collection: collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>


------------------------------

Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 15:00:11 +0000
From:    Robert Anderson <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities

I found the attached paper to be a good recent reference for justification for museums and taxonomic 'services'.  I especially refer to points 3, v and 4.  While these issues may be obvious to us in the taxonomic community I think it's important we continually pass along publications that highlight the importance of these services to administrators, many of whom may not be aware of these important issues.

Robert Anderson
Director - Beaty Centre for Species Discovery
Research and Collections Division
Canadian Museum of Nature
PO Box 3443, Station D
Ottawa, ON. K1P 6P4 CANADA

613-364-4060 (tel)
613-364-4027 (fax)
[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
www.nature.ca<http://www.nature.ca/>
https://sites.google.com/site/longinollama/


From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Hall, Wesley E - (wehall)
Sent: February-09-18 9:43 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities

Chris hit the nail on the head describing my position at the University of Arizona Insect Collection. Half of my position is museum collection management, while the other half is "Insect Diagnostics" as part of the UA College of Agriculture's Cooperative Extension mission. We are the Land Grant university for the state of Arizona, and Insect Diagnostics fills part of that mission. I handle all insect ID'S submitted  to the UA from the public, agriculture, industry, statewide Extension agents, Master Gardeners, state and federal agencies, forensics, veterinary, etc.,. Cooperative Extension has committed to supporting my position .50% to meet our Extension goals, but timely and accurate diagnostics would not be possible without the administrative support of a well-curated and thriving  museum collection.

Cheers,
Gene

Gene Hall
University of Arizona Insect Collection (Manager)
& CALS Cooperative Extension (Insect Diagnostics)
Department of Entomology
1140 E. South Campus Dr.
University of Arizona
Tucson, AZ  85721
Ph: 520.621.6446
Email: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]edu>
UA INSECT COLLECTION: http://www.uainsectcollection.com/
PTILIIDAE: http://tolweb.org/Ptiliidae
ZOOTAXA Subject Editor: STAPHYLINOIDEA: http://www.mapress.com/j/zt/pages/view/Coleoptera
________________________________
From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>> on behalf of Skelley, Paul <Paul.Skelley@FRESHFROMFLORIDA.COM<mailto:Pa[log in to unmask]COM>>
Sent: Friday, February 9, 2018 6:54:15 AM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities


I've been reading the various comments, and Chris's note stuck a cord. "Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand..." Most of our collections have their roots in extension and diagnostics (or teaching diagnostics). It appears that most of our positions also have split responsibilities : diagnostics/extension, research/teaching, museum care. Our administrations have forgotten their roots and the reasons our forefathers developed collections. Convincing administrations of the value of morphological vouchers as the base for needed identifications, even to allow accurate molecular work for diagnostics, could help. But, if you don't have a diagnostic component to your job, this will all prove problematic.



"Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it." Witchcraft and other lost arts are subjects for another essay. Yet, I totally agree with Chris, many of us may be the last of the druids.



Paul



++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Paul E. Skelley, Ph.D., C.P.M.

Entomology Section Administrator

Florida State Collection of Arthropods

Division of Plant Industry/Entomology

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services



Assistant Head Editor: Insecta Mundi



Desk (352) 395-4678

Fax (352) 395-4614

Receptionist (352) 395-4700

[log in to unmask]com<mailto:Paul.Skelley@FreshFromFlorida.com>



The Doyle Conner Building

1911 SW 34th St

Gainesville, Florida 32608 USA

or

P.O.Box 147100

Gainesville, Florida 32614-7100, USA



www.FreshFromFlorida.com<http://www.freshfromflorida.com/>



Please note that Florida has a broad public records law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).

Most written communications to or from state employees are public records obtainable

by the public upon request. Emails sent to me at this email address may be considered

public and will only be withheld from disclosure if deemed confidential pursuant to the

laws of the State of Florida.







From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Christopher Carlton
Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:00 PM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



I responded to Paul off list about this, but just to point out a couple of things. First, as representatives of several collections have noted, current management/curator support may be in place, but concerns exist about what happens when the current person retires. This is typical of long term uncertainty about continuity of these sorts of positions, and nothing new. Second, at least at land grant institutions, the role of collections and experienced curators in diagnostic roles is directly relevant to the extension service mission at those institutions.



The extension contribution of collection manager/curator position is vastly under appreciated. Thus, extension support for those positions at many land grant universities is an underutilized revenue stream for support of those positions. Diagnostics and collection development should go hand in hand. If the extension budget is not at least partially allocated to supporting a well curated collection representing the regional fauna, then something is wrong with the mindset at that institution.



Good taxonomists and diagnosticians possess a skillset that most colleagues and stakeholders regard as bordering on witchcraft. It's time they got paid for it.



Chris



Chris Carlton, Ph. D.

Director, Carlton Astronomy Campus

Professor of Entomology, Emeritus

Department of Entomology, Louisiana State University

Baton Rouge, LA USA 70803

&lt;a href=http://www.cleardarksky.com/c/CrAstCmpMSkey.html&gt;









________________________________

From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>> on behalf of Bayless, Victoria M. <[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]EDU>>
Sent: Thursday, February 8, 2018 4:23:10 PM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



Hello all,

I am the Curator/Collections manager at The Louisiana State Arthropod Museum.  This position is full-time staff, hard money,  ½ research and ½ extension.  Our Department of Entomology faculty systematist also serves as the Director of the Museum.  Over the years we have had soft money research associate assistants, but none at the current time.

Victoria



Victoria Moseley Bayless

Curator, Louisiana State Arthropod Museum

Insect Diagnostician, LSU AgCenter

Past-President, Coleopterists Society

Louisiana State University

Dept. of Entomology, LSB-404

Baton Rouge, LA  70803-1710

Phone: 225-578-1838

www.lsuinsects.org<http://www.lsuinsects.org/>

www.lsuagcenter.com<http://www.lsuagcenter.com/>

www.coleopsoc.org<http://www.coleopsoc.org/>









Sent: Thursday, February 08, 2018 10:48 AM
To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Question regarding staff support for entomological collections at U.S. universities



On Feb 7, 2018, at 3:16 PM, Paul Marek <[log in to unmask]<mailto:br[log in to unmask]>> wrote:



Hi everyone,

This question is mostly directed toward directors/curators of entomological collections at U.S. universities.

If your collection has a permanent position assigned to it (e.g. collections manager, curatorial assistant, technician, undergraduate, GRA-i.e. other than than the director/curator), how do you pay for this position? Is it through extension, soft money, department/college, university?

The Virginia Tech Insect Collection (VTEC, collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>) received a NSF CSBR in 2015 that reinvigorated the collection after ~20 years, spurring digitization, staff/student hires, infrastructure improvements, and consequently an increase in loans, data inquiries, research, and usage of the material. The CSBR award is ending this year, and I want to keep the momentum of the natural history collection going. I am therefore in the process of finding support for the VTEC. We have received some private donations, which are great, but they're sporadic and have only started to replenish a small gift account. The collection, after the NSF award ends, would then be only supported by a department-supported phone line and a faculty position (me as curator, but with a 0% appointment to work in the collection).

I recently requested a permanent position for the VTEC from our college dean and department head. They were generally receptive about the idea, but wanted to hear how other universities pay for these positions.

Thank you for any information or advice you have.

Paul Marek



--
Paul E. Marek
Assistant Professor
Department of Entomology, Virginia Tech
Price Hall, Rm 216A (MC0319)
170 Drillfield Drive
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
(540) 231-5653
[log in to unmask]<mailto:pmarek@vt.edu>
Lab website: www.jointedlegs.org<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.jointedlegs.org&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=_azLcP7DO6bJY32wsUzYYoFqi79pegd9RQ9D37mi_Fs&e=>
VT Insect Collection: collection.ento.vt.edu<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__collection.ento.vt.edu&d=DwMFaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=IeoqTEcS907Y5Hg4Si5_yUAwsqfsUzH1JYYqT8NeT88&m=3vqyIdiuflFDBKnKf1UFw21udmwYx4hWwJD46xGIzGQ&s=bqDtj4duhl68JNrJHwzQOAxb9pkMzUGdjc75DxzeY0o&e=>


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Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 13:46:28 -0600
From:    Andy Deans <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: vermiculite

A relevant message on nhcoll listserv (below). I don't get too many packages, at least lately, with vermiculite, but it's good think about these issues. I suspect not many of us use it ...?

===== FWD from Nhcoll-l =====

Hi Folks,

I have health and safety concerns regarding the use of vermiculite as an “outer packet” absorbency material in the shipping of  alcohol preserved specimens. We have never used vermiculite in the Florida Museum Fish Collection, but I receive many specimen shipments containing it and thus must handle it. And as anyone who has touched the stuff can attest, no matter how carefully handled, tiny particles of vermiculite end up suspended in the air one is breathing.

A number of scientific papers lead me to conclude my health and safety concerns are not unreasonable. Here’s some of what I’ve found:

* No matter where it was mined from, vermiculite is likely to contain fibrous minerals.

* That few of these types of fibrous minerals have been formally classified as asbestos and regulated as such would appear to be more a function of what fibers were in use commercially at the time the regulations were created. (Baumann, F., J. P. Ambrosi, and M. Carbone. 2013. Asbestos is not just asbestos: an unrecognized health hazard. The Lancet Vol 14 June 2013).

* To be certain, vermiculite has at times been found to contain asbestiform amphiboles (groups of needlelike silicates clumped together) such as winchite, richterite, and tremolite, the latter of which is regulated (Sullivan, P. 2007. Vermiculite, respiratory disease, and asbestos exposure in Libby, Montana: Update of a cohort mortality study. Environmental Health Perspectives Apr; 115 (4): 579-585).


My question to the list: Why is anyone using vermiculite as an absorbent when inert and safe alternatives such as polypropylene chemical spill absorbent pads are widely and cheaply available? Failing any good answer to this question, my follow up would be, can we all please stop?

Best wishes,

Rob Robins


P.S. The Baumann paper concludes thusly, and I agree:

“The restricted regulatory definition of asbestos to six fibres used commercially contributes to miscommunication and uncertainty regarding the toxic effects of some fibrous minerals. We propose that all fibrous minerals be handled as potentially pathogenic until they are proven safe. Moreover, to protect human health, a wider regulatory definition of asbestos should include all potentially carcinogenic mineral fibres, without distinction of type and commercial use.”

Robert H. Robins
Collection Manager
Division of Ichthyology
FLMNH Fishes logo email small
Florida Museum of Natural History
1659 Museum Road
Gainesville, FL 32611-7800
Office: (352) 273-1957
Fax: (352) 846-0287
[log in to unmask]
www.flmnh.ufl.edu


Search the Collection:
http://specifyportal.flmnh.ufl.edu/fishes/

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Date:    Fri, 9 Feb 2018 21:19:20 +0000
From:    "Opitz, Cindy E" <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: vermiculite

Forwarding Andy's response from Nhcoll-l, with suggestion for safer alternative:

3M chemical absorption sheets are the way to go - https://www.amazon.com/3M-Chemical-P-110-Absorption-Capacity/dp/B00AKLFZ2C.  We cut them into appropriately sized squares to insert into all ethanol containing packages that emanate from the KUBI.

Andy
    A  :             A  :             A  :
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    V                V                V
Andy Bentley
Ichthyology Collection Manager
University of Kansas
Biodiversity Institute
Dyche Hall
1345 Jayhawk Boulevard
Lawrence, KS, 66045-7561
USA

Tel: (785) 864-3863
Fax: (785) 864-5335
Email: [log in to unmask]
http://ichthyology.biodiversity.ku.edu
    A  :             A  :             A  :
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    V                V                V

-----Original Message-----
From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Andy Deans
Sent: Friday, February 09, 2018 1:46 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: vermiculite

A relevant message on nhcoll listserv (below). I don't get too many packages, at least lately, with vermiculite, but it's good think about these issues. I suspect not many of us use it ...?

===== FWD from Nhcoll-l =====

Hi Folks,

I have health and safety concerns regarding the use of vermiculite as an “outer packet” absorbency material in the shipping of  alcohol preserved specimens. We have never used vermiculite in the Florida Museum Fish Collection, but I receive many specimen shipments containing it and thus must handle it. And as anyone who has touched the stuff can attest, no matter how carefully handled, tiny particles of vermiculite end up suspended in the air one is breathing.

A number of scientific papers lead me to conclude my health and safety concerns are not unreasonable. Here’s some of what I’ve found:

* No matter where it was mined from, vermiculite is likely to contain fibrous minerals.

* That few of these types of fibrous minerals have been formally classified as asbestos and regulated as such would appear to be more a function of what fibers were in use commercially at the time the regulations were created. (Baumann, F., J. P. Ambrosi, and M. Carbone. 2013. Asbestos is not just asbestos: an unrecognized health hazard. The Lancet Vol 14 June 2013).

* To be certain, vermiculite has at times been found to contain asbestiform amphiboles (groups of needlelike silicates clumped together) such as winchite, richterite, and tremolite, the latter of which is regulated (Sullivan, P. 2007. Vermiculite, respiratory disease, and asbestos exposure in Libby, Montana: Update of a cohort mortality study. Environmental Health Perspectives Apr; 115 (4): 579-585).


My question to the list: Why is anyone using vermiculite as an absorbent when inert and safe alternatives such as polypropylene chemical spill absorbent pads are widely and cheaply available? Failing any good answer to this question, my follow up would be, can we all please stop?

Best wishes,

Rob Robins


P.S. The Baumann paper concludes thusly, and I agree:

“The restricted regulatory definition of asbestos to six fibres used commercially contributes to miscommunication and uncertainty regarding the toxic effects of some fibrous minerals. We propose that all fibrous minerals be handled as potentially pathogenic until they are proven safe. Moreover, to protect human health, a wider regulatory definition of asbestos should include all potentially carcinogenic mineral fibres, without distinction of type and commercial use.”

Robert H. Robins
Collection Manager
Division of Ichthyology
FLMNH Fishes logo email small
Florida Museum of Natural History
1659 Museum Road
Gainesville, FL 32611-7800
Office: (352) 273-1957
Fax: (352) 846-0287
[log in to unmask]
www.flmnh.ufl.edu


Search the Collection:
http://specifyportal.flmnh.ufl.edu/fishes/

=====================

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End of ECN-L Digest - 8 Feb 2018 to 9 Feb 2018 (#2018-15)
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