The Bruner Club, named after Lawrence Bruner - the first department chairman - is a social and academic club for entomology graduate students. The club has seven student officers and two faculty advisers. Officers are elected each April to serve a one-year term and faculty advisers serve a two-year term. The Bruner Club aims to support and serve entomology graduate students and the Nebraska community in multiple ways. The club has formed various committees such as outreach, fundraising, information, education, social, and welcome to perform all the activities competently. This also allows students to showcase their interests and skills in the department.
The club provides community outreach through presentations at the Lincoln Children's Zoo, Pioneers Park Nature Center, K-12 schools, and others to teach the public about the ecological importance of arthropods and promote interest in both entomology and UNL. Social gatherings such as the departmental summer barbecue, international potluck, holiday parties, and collecting trips are sponsored annually by the club and serve to promote camaraderie and strengthen bonds among graduate students and all department members.
The Bruner Club sponsors seminars and workshops for professional development and fostering of mental health and emotional well-being of students. These activities are self-funded through fundraising via honey, t-shirt, and craft sales.
The Bruner Club also organizes professional development events in collaboration with other departmental graduate student associations.
Club members are active in professional organizations such as the Entomological Society of America, where they present papers or symposia and regularly participate in the Linnaean Games, an insect quiz bowl competition at regional and national entomology meetings. The Bruner Club is also responsible for the selection and presentation of the Distinguished Alumni Award every two years and seminar invitation presented to an exemplary Nebraska Entomology alumnus/alumna, along with coordinating the Alumni Dinner - a dinner held every four years when alumni from across the country return to UNL to reconnect and celebrate our departmental accomplishments.
2021-22 Bruner Club Officers
President - Courtney Brummel
Vice-President - Heena Puri
Secretary - Rogan Tokach
Treasurer - Andrea Rilakovic
Graduate Student Association (GSA) Representative - Jeff Cluever (Heena Puri - alternate)
Seminar Committee Student Representative - Mia Luong
Student Representative to the Faculty - Gabriela Inveninato Carmona
Social - Natasha Umezu (chair), Sanket Shinde, Heena Puri, Luis Ochoa Cadena, Sheldon Brummel, Mika da Silva Lima, Courtney Brummel
Fundraising - Mia Luong (chair), Sanket Shinde, Hannah Stowe, Andrea Rilakovic
Computer - Rogan Tokach (chair), Shianne Lindsay
Outreach - Vilma Montenegro & Shianne Lindsay (co-chairs), Sanket Shinde, Mia Luong, Luis Ochoa Cadena, Mika da Silva Lima, Hannah Stowe, Shianne Lindsay, Araceli Gomez, Andrea Rilakovic, Courtney Brummel
Education - Mia Luong (chair), Juan Betancurt, Natasha Umezu, Andrea Rilakovic
Welcoming - Gabi Carmona, Sanket Shinde, Juan Betancurt, Rogan Tokach, Heena Puri, Natasha Umezu