April 25, 2014

GEO Major Brad Kasberg Wins Goldman Prize to Work with Miami Tribe

Story reprinted and excerpted courtesy of the Miami News and Public Information Office.

Miami University senior Brad Kasberg, recipient of the $30,000 Joanna Jackson Goldman Memorial Prize, will spend a year after graduation working with the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma to develop a sustainable land use plan that will address the cultural, ecological, and economic needs of the tribe.

GEO major Brad Kasberg wins Goldman Prize

The Goldman prize annually allows a Miami senior to realize a dream. It gives students with exceptional promise the gift of time to pursue ideas and activities that will enrich their later work and careers. The prize is believed to be among the largest undergraduate awards in the country.

Kasberg, a member of the Miami Nation of Indiana, a geography and anthropology double major and an urban planning and regional analysis minor, is well positioned to carry out his project.

“As a Miami, I have invaluable resources of knowledge granted from my interactions with the Myaamia Project and the rest of the tribal community,” Kasberg said.

The Myaamia Project is a tribal initiative with Miami University to advance the Miami tribe’s language and revitalization efforts.

Kasberg will:
• conduct an analysis of zinc, lead and cadmium contamination of soil and water on Miami tribal land and map the widespread contamination of the tribal land;
• cultivate plants culturally significant to the tribe and analyze them for zinc, lead and cadmium contamination; and
• develop a sustainable land use plan for the tribe.

“Appropriate land use will vary according to levels of contamination on these lands, yet the degree of lead contamination across these lands has not been comprehensively defined,” Kasberg said.

Kasberg is a geography and anthropology double major and an urban planning and regional analysis minor, and participated in the department’s Wilks Scholar Shaping Sustainable Communities cohort. “I consider the Shaping Sustainabilities cohort to define my time here at Miami University, as it has shaped my interests and goals since my sophomore year,” Kasberg said. “Without this cohort, I may never have been introduced to the importance of urban planning, environmental studies and the real world politics that entangle these issues.

For the full story about Brad’s research, click here.

About David Prytherch

Urban, political, and cultural geography; urban planning & sustainability; Europe and North America