ESSM Awards & Merits 2015 Yong Zhou Receives Grant to Attend 2016 Kirkham Conference in Israel Yong Zhou, a Ph.D. student with Drs. Tom Boutton and Ben Wu, received a 2016 Kirkham Conference Travel Grant from the Soil Science Society of America. The Kirkham Conference will be held in Israel at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev from 10-14 April 2016. Kirkham Conferences are topical meetings that provide soil scientists with opportunities for in-depth explorations of interdisciplinary subjects. The 2016 conference is focused on “The Root Zone: Soil Physics and Beyond”. Yong’s presentation is entitled “Landscape-scale spatial patterns of root distribution along the soil profile: Linking aboveground plant communities to belowground biogeochemical cycling.” His research quantifies the 3-dimensional spatial patterns of roots in the upper 1.2 meters of the soil profile, and relates these patterns to plant community composition at the landscape scale in a subtropical savanna parkland.