In May, I successfully defended my dissertation (setup below) to a virtual audience of family, friends, faculty, and former students (and a live audience of two cats and one husband). I am so grateful to everyone for all of their support and encouragement, and special thanks to John Melack who first provided me with this opportunity and has consistently been my advocate and my mentor.
Throughout my degree, I had the support of a tremendous group of friends and family in Santa Barbara and all over the country. I found an incredible community at UCSB, and I am so grateful for all of the friendships and adventures I couldn’t have even begun to envision five years ago. Thank you everyone!
Last week, Katherine Le graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a B.S. in Biological Sciences and a minor in Earth Science. With generous support from the Worster Award, she completed and presented an independent project examining the contribution of zooplankton excretion to giant kelp forest nutrient budgets. She has been an invaluable member of our laboratory group for the past few years, contributing to numerous dissertation and summer REU projects, and she will be greatly missed. However, she's already embarked on her next adventure! Just a few days after graduating, she flew cross-country to start her new position as the Environmental Data Initiative Fellow at the Lacawac Sanctuary and Biological Field Station. Congratulations Katherine!!
It has been a busy spring quarter filled with lots of teaching, new projects, and prepping for summer work! I was recently invited to present on struggles and strategies relating to using data science in the classroom at the UCSB Graduate Student Teaching Symposium. The conference was a great opportunity to meet fellow educators, and I enjoyed hearing others' ideas for encouraging student engagement and knowledge retention across disciplines.
One of my students, Lila, has begun work on her independent project examining beach hopper excretion in sandy beach sediments. The project is a close collaboration with Kyle Emery, another EEMB graduate student, and we cannot wait to have results in just a few short weeks!
Another of my students, Katherine, was recently awarded the Worster Award which provides summer funding for an undergraduate student to perform research under the mentorship of an EEMB graduate student. She will be continuing a project examining zooplankton in local kelp forest canopies and is already busy planning her field work. Congratulations Katherine!!
I will be attending the ASLO Summer Meeting in Victoria, British Columbia in early June and presenting part of my dissertation research in Session #11 - The Biogeochemistry of Organic Matter: Cutting Across Ecosystem Boundaries and Aquatic Gradients. More details on that and summer plans coming soon...
I am a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Biology at Duke University.