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 excited to announce that my application for emergency funding from the UCSB Associated Students Coastal Fund was recently approved. I will be using this grant to study the effects of the sediment deposited on Goleta Beach following the Montecito debris flow in January. Stay tuned for updates on the project, which will involve several collaborators and a fantastic team of undergraduates! If you'd like to learn more about the disposal of debris or current water quality at Goleta Beach, follow the links below.
Last week, Chloe Smith (REU 2017) attended the Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland, Oregon to present her independent research examining the effects of low pH seawater on sediment microbial processes. As a member of the Hampton Scholar cohort, she was mentored by Karen Casciotti and Jonathan Zehr and had the opportunity to spend the week learning about new research and meet other budding aquatic scientists. This was Chloe's first scientific conference, and she is looking forward to many more!
This past week, I passed my qualifying exam and advanced to candidacy in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology here at UCSB. I would like to thank my committee members - Dr. John Melack, Dr. Mark Brzezinski, Dr. Sally MacIntyre, and Dr. Deron Burkepile - for all of their support. I cannot wait to continue work on all of my projects in the new year.
See you in 2018!
Chloe Smith, my NSF REU student from this past summer, has received the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography's Multi-cultural Program Fellowship to attend the 2018 Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland, OR. The fellowship establishes a cohort of young researchers who attend the meeting as a group, and it pairs them with a mentor for the duration of the meeting. In addition to attending various talks and panels, she will be presenting a poster on her research examining the effects of low pH on marine sediment biogeochemical processes. If you're headed to the meeting this spring, be sure to check out her poster as part of the Biogeochemical Processes Across Oxic-Anoxic Transitions session. Great work, Chloe!!
For more information about the ASLO Multi-cultural Program, click here.
Whenever I need a break from lab, I love stepping outside and exploring the Santa Barbara coastline - between kelp forests, eelgrass beds, and rocky tide pools, there's so much to see!
The following are a few photos from my travels this summer to Channel Islands National Park, Campus Point State Marine Conservation Area, and Coal Oil Point Reserve, all of which are located in the Santa Barbara Channel.
This summer, I've been fortunate to have two excellent undergraduate research assistants helping with my field and laboratory work.
Chloe Smith is a rising 4th year at Oregon Institute of Technology and is pursuing her Bachelors in Environmental Science. She was a SBC LTER National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates grant recipient, and she spent the summer researching the effects of low pH (acidified) water on marine sediment processes.
Katherine Le is a rising 3rd year here at UCSB, and she has been helping with hydrology and nutrient cycling research in the Melack lab. She also works in the Reed lab assisting with data processing and analysis.
Over the past few months, both women have been hard at work learning how to sample sediments for use in our bioreactors and how to process water samples for ammonium concentrations using a fluorometric method. They'll be traveling to various conferences in the coming months to present their work, so be sure to check back for updates about their findings!
I am a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Science at the University of Nevada Reno.