CEE PhD student Joe Charbonnet was named the winner of the UC-wide 2018 Grad Slam Championship.
Last month, Charbonnet placed first, and was the People's Choice winner, in Berkeley's 2018 championship. As Berkeley's champion, he advanced to the UC-wide competition.
Competing students had to explain their research and its value in 3 minutes or less to an audience that was savvy, but unfamiliar with the field.
Charbonnet impressed the audience and the judges alike with his talk, “A Stormwater Solution,” which described how sand coated with manganese oxide can be used to remove contaminants from stormwater.
He is currently field-testing the use of this sand to replenish California’s underground aquifers. His faculty adviser is David Sedlak.
Afterward, Charbonnet described his reasons for entering the competition: “The ability to contextualize and defend your research is a huge part of the research process itself. Knowing the answer to high-level questions—like ‘Why are you studying this? Why is this important?’—not only makes your research more useful and fundable, it also helps to guide you on your search for truth and benefit to society.”
See Berkeley’s Champion for the 2018 UC-Wide Grad Slam Championship Chosen (Berkeley Graduate Division, April 13, 2018)
See Charbonnet's presentation at 59:54 in the video below.