Nan-Yao and Jill H. Su Endowed Fund for Entomology

History:  Dr. Nan-Yao Su has revolutionized how we manage subterranean termites. As a distinguished authority on termite behavior, ecology, and control and as the inventor of a top-selling termite bait product, Corteva’s Sentricon© Colony Elimination System, he has achieved success in both the academic sphere and the business world. Sentricon is among the most successful technologies licensed by the University of Florida, where Dr. Su is a distinguished professor of entomology.

Born in Taiwan, Dr. Su moved to Japan as a youth. He completed bachelor's and master's degrees at the Kyoto Institute of Technology before coming to the University of Hawai‘i. In 1982, he earned a doctorate in entomology under the tutelage of emeritus professor Minoru Tamashiro. While working with Dr. Tamashiro, he formulated the integrated pest management approach to subterranean termite control on which the Sentricon system is based.

Termites cause about $5 billion in property damage in the United States each year. Prior to Sentricon being introduced, the standard treatment for subterranean (or ground) termites was to saturate the soil surrounding a structure with hundreds of gallons of liquid insecticide, creating a toxic barrier. In contrast, the Sentricon system employs bait stations embedded in the soil and stocked with durable baits to be fed by termites foraging in the area. The baits contain a small amount of chitin synthesis inhibitor that the termites carry back to the colony. Since 1995, the Sentricon system has been used in 32 countries to protect more than 3.7 million structures, including the White House, the Statue of Liberty, and ‘Iolani Palace.

In comparison to chemical barrier treatments, Sentricon utilizes a much smaller volume of much less toxic pesticide, targets the termites precisely, and does not require drilling beneath the structure to deliver the pesticide. To date, Sentricon is estimated to have reduced pesticide use by more than 11,100 metric tons. Dr. Su's achievement in developing this efficient and environmentally sensitive method for eradicating termite colonies has received several notable awards, such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Honor Award for Individual Achievement in Research (1996) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award (2000).

Dr. Su is an eminent leader in termite research. He has authored more than 350 publications, holds ten patents, and has achieved great success in attracting extramural funding for his research program. He advised the United Nations Environmental Program and the governments of New Zealand, Chile, and the People's Republic of China.

The economic, environmental, and social impacts of Dr. Su's accomplishments exemplify the mission and vision of CTAHR. The college was proud to name him the CTAHR Outstanding Alumnus for their centennial year, 2007.

Description:  The purpose of this fund is to assist graduate students in Entomology or undergraduates majoring in Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences with an emphasis on the field of entomology in the Department of Plant & Environmental Protection Sciences (PEPS) at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR). Funds may be used to assist students with various types of support including, but not limited to, scholarships, awards, research, travel to conferences and other related expenses as deemed appropriate by the department.
Level:  Undergraduate or Graduate
High School:  N/A
Residency:  N/A
GPA:  Good academic standing as determined by the department and/or selection committee.
Enrollment Status:  Full-time or Part-time
Contact Person:  Carol Oshiro
Contact Department:  Academic & Student Affairs Office
Contact Address:  3050 Maile Way, Gilmore 117
Honolulu, HI 96822
Contact Website:
Contact Phone:  (808) 956-8183
Contact Email:  [email protected]
Application Info:
Press Release:

Help grow the impact of this fund by making a gift today. Give Now