Erika Foster grew up in Portland, Oregon. She enjoys climbing, biking, rafting and backpacking in Montana wildlands. She greatly values not only the nearby recreation opportunities, but also the learning opportunities out in the field. As a Resource Conservation student she has participated in hands-on learning experiences, including the Wilderness and Civilization program, the Indian Himalayas course and a summer Climate Change Field Studies program in Glacier. The climate change field course introduced Erika to the use of biochar as a way to sequester carbon. Biochar burners are transported to timber harvest sites, where the slash is taken to create this activated carbon. The biochar is spread on site to facilitate plant growth and enhance the soil structure and nutrient cycling. Erika decided to examine how this process affects soil in Montana from water holding capacity to microbial biomass to pH for an Honors Thesis project. In a greenhouse she measured the growth of bluebunch wheatgrass, silverly lupine and knapweed in response to different rates of biochar application. She presented preliminary results at the UMCUR conference in April and will finish her paper at the end of spring 2012. Erika is the recipient of the 2012 Resource Conservation Thesis Award.