Student Awards

Annually, the PRSSS offers 3 awards for students: Soil Science Student Awards, Poster Competition Awards, and the Warkentin Prize. Please see the information below for each of the awards:

The PRSSS in partnership with the Y.P. Heung Foundation awards a graduate student and an undergraduate student on the merits of:

  • Academic achievement
  • Research proposal (graduate students only)
  • Leadership and community service
  • Communication skills
  • Letters of recommendation

The Les Lavkulich Graduate Student Award in Soil Science. One award of $5000. Please follow the application guidelines HERE .

The Art Bomke Undergraduate Student Award in Soil Science. One award of $3000. Please follow the application guidelines HERE .


Applications for the 2022 Awards are open. 

2021 Winners:

Les Lavkulich Student Award: Paula Porto - Concurrent MSc student at UBC under the supervision of Sean Smuckler

  • Studying the impact of soil drainage on soil greenhouse gas emissions from highbush blueberry farms
  • Previously served as PRSSS graduate student representative and secretary

Art Bomke Student Award: Helga Holler-Busch - Bachelor's student at the UNBC

  • Currently working on research project with Dr. Darwyn Coxson that seeks to assess the impact of slope aspect on Usnea longissima growth and morphology
  • Beginning undergraduate thesis in August with Dr. Lisa Wood observing the impact on glyphosate on AM fungi


  • Patricia Hanuszak - MSc student at the University of British Columbia
  • Hannah Friesen - Undergraduate student at the University of British Columbia


  • Carson Li - MSc student at the University of British Columbia
  • Patricia Hanuszak - Undergraduate student at the University of British Columbia

Annually, we provide students with the opportunity to showcase their ideas and projects related to soil science at our Spring Workshop and AGM.

To present a poster at our upcoming Spring Workshop and AGM please register HERE.

Past Recipients

Patricia Hanuszak (UBC) - "Effects of a 4-Year Grassland Set-aside on Soil Aggregate Stability"

Marieta Marin-Bruzos (UBC) - "Chitinases gene abundance in cherry orchards under different land management"

Vaselios Kokkoris (UBCO) - "Are fungal inoculants effective in the field?"


1st Prize: Nicolette Lax (UBC) - Effect of low tunnels and plant biomass and fruit yield of summer squash

2nd Prize: Marieta Marin-Bruzos (UBC) - Potential of cherry rhizosphere Actinomycetes as biocontrol agents against plant-parasitic nematodes

3rd Prize: Doug Terpsma (TRU) - The “Topograp





hic Signature”: Using Fine-Scale Soil Variability and Topography for Predicting Available Soil Water in Hot, Dry Douglas-fir Ecosystems

Every year, the PRSSS accepts nominations and applications for the Warkentin Prize, in recognition of Dr. Benno P. Warkentin. The Warkentin Prize of $750 will be awarded to a student or recent graduate that has published a peer-reviewed article or thesis in the field of soil science.

  • For more information about the award and how to apply click here


Past Recipients


Zimin Li - Université Catholique de Louvain - UC Louvain


Vaselios Kokkoris - University of British Columbia Okanagan


Gabriel Maltais-Landry - University of British Columbia


Jacynthe Masse University of British Columbia


Katelyn Congreves - University of Guelph