Student cutting samples from a section of peat in a lab.
Some students aren't afraid to get their hands dirty.

Some students aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty.

Harttung is willing is dive elbow-deep into sopping wet peat and slice off chunks using a bread knife. She did just that over the summer while helping US Forest Service researchers and ecology faculty, including her advisor Evan Kane.

They dismantled a peat mesocosm experiment that spanned four years as part of ongoing ecology research to better understand global carbon cycles. A mesocosm, Harttung says, is the balance between micro and macro—the perfect size for a big- to-do kind of experiment.

"Climate change is very real and no one person can stop it. However, I'm doing the best I can to further humanity's understanding of this global process through research."Sarah Hartung

Michigan Technological University is a public research university founded in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, and is home to more than 7,000 students from 55 countries around the world. Consistently ranked among the best universities in the country for return on investment, Michigan’s flagship technological university offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science and technology, engineering, computing, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, social sciences, and the arts. The rural campus is situated just miles from Lake Superior in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, offering year-round opportunities for outdoor adventure.