VERMILLION, S.D. – Meghann Jarchow, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology and coordinator of the sustainability program at the University of South Dakota, is the 2016 recipient of the Blair and Linda Tremere Faculty Service Award.
It is presented annually to a member of the College of Arts & Sciences faculty who has demonstrated outstanding public service to the local community or to the state of South Dakota.
Jarchow joined the USD faculty in 2012 to serve as the coordinator for the university’s new sustainability program, an interdisciplinary major and minor that emphasizes research and experiential learning to find solutions to real-world environmental, social and economic problems. After moving to Vermillion, Jarchow soon began working with sustainability-related organizations in town. It was a natural fit. “I am fortunate because my career is well aligned with my professional and personal passions,” she said.
A long list of community organizations and events have benefitted from Jarchow’s presence in Vermillion. She became an active member of the Living River Group, the local chapter of the Sierra Club, her first year in town and also joined the board of directors of the Spirit Mound Trust, which manages the historic prairie nine miles north of the city.
After a few years in Vermillion and at USD, Jarchow started new sustainability events and organizations in town and on campus. Some of these include coordinating the annual Earth Days celebration, a weeklong series of events that focuses on honoring and protecting our planet. She also helped form Greening Vermillion, a local non-profit organization that engages the community to conserve natural resources while enhancing social and economic prosperity. Other activities include promoting science education through an annual session on Women in Science at Mt. Marty College in Yankton and working with the Vermillion Girl Scouts and the South Dakota Science Olympiad competition for middle and high school students.
All of these activities pair nicely with Jarchow’s research focus on prairie conservation and her professional duties as coordinator of the USD Sustainability Program. “A lot of people do their work and then do other things they are passionate about,” she said. “I’m passionate about sustainability.”
The Blair and Linda (Schuller) Tremere Faculty Service Award was established in 2011 by Blair and Linda Tremere of Golden Valley, Minnesota, to encourage and recognize the valuable role that Arts & Sciences faculty play in the lives of their communities and state. All tenure-track and tenured faculty in the College of Arts & Sciences are eligible to receive the award. Linda (Schuller) Tremere is a 1970 alumna from the USD School of Business (B.S., accounting) and a native of Amherst, South Dakota. Blair Tremere, a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, native, is a 1968 alumnus from the USD College of Arts & Sciences (B.A., government/journalism) and also received his M.A. in public administration from USD in 1971.