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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:New Mexico Highlands University
  • Robert K Reid
  • (505) 426-2145
  • Blanca Cespedes
  • Owen Burney
  • Craig F Conley
Award Date:12/12/2019
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 4,997,141
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 1,051,261
  • FY 2020=$1,051,261
Start Date:12/15/2019
End Date:11/30/2024
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.076
Primary Program Source:040106 NSF Education & Human Resource
Award Title or Description:CREST Center for Forest Restoration Triangle (FORT)
Federal Award ID Number:1914463
DUNS ID:047134101
Parent DUNS ID:047134101
Program:Centers for Rsch Excell in S&T
Program Officer:
  • Victor Santiago
  • (703) 292-4673

Awardee Location

Street:University Avenue
City:Las Vegas
County:Las Vegas
Awardee Cong. District:03

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:New Mexico Highlands University
City:Las Vegas
County:Las Vegas
Cong. District:03

Abstract at Time of Award

The Centers of Research Excellence in Science and Technology program provides support to enhance the research capabilities of minority-serving institutions through the establishment of centers that effectively integrate education and research. With National Science Foundation support, New Mexico Highlands University will develop the Forest Restoration Triangle (FORT) Center. The FORT Center will engage in regional multidisciplinary research, education and stakeholder collaborations to advance the understanding of the effects of restoration activities on historically forested environments. The Forest Restoration Triangle Center is a collaboration of three institutions: The Department of Natural Resources Management at New Mexico Highlands University; New Mexico State University's John T. Harrington Forestry Research Center and the New Mexico Forest and Watershed Restoration Institute at New Mexico Highlands University. FORT will provide novel science-based solutions for private, tribal, state, and federal forest managers faced with the twin threat of catastrophic fires due to overgrown forests and the inability of post-fire plant communities and ecosystems to naturally regenerate. The FORT Center articulates three research thrusts. Subproject 1 will determine the extent to which a nucleation (planting in aggregated pattern) planting strategy matched with an improved seedling stock is effective to establish vegetation on damaged forest sites. This research will contribute to understanding the combination of nucleation size and planting density that promotes greater survival and growth. Subproject 2 will conduct field research to enhance understanding of changes in fire regimes driven by climate variability. It will examine post-restoration stand structure for increased establishment and survival of natural regeneration, Subproject 3 applies a nucleation concept to pre-fire and post-fire planning at the landscape level, introducing high impact practices to fire modeling technologies. Nucleation sites will be evaluated and modeled in the context of strategic fuels treatments and fire behavior. The FORT Center will ensure the training of a generation of highly qualified STEM investigators with the skills and experience to address complicated ecological questions. A place-based approach to engage students in fire management and forest ecology and restoration will be implemented. The FORT Center will develop strategies for the management and restoration of resilient forests in the context of climate change and fire. Although regionally focused, FORT Center activities address a global need for management of wildfires. The Forest Restoration Triangle Center at New Mexico Highlands University will improve forestry education by connecting classroom lessons with real-world problems; revitalize outreach by continued and close cooperation with watershed and other land management groups; and promote diversity by emphasizing recruitment, retention, and mentoring of students and practitioners representing underrepresented groups. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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