Man standing in creek
". . . the world is mud-luscious . . . [and] puddle wonderful" –ee cummings

My research broadly focuses on the coupled movement of water and elements (e.g., nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus) within waterbodies and through landscapes. I currently focus on this research as a postdoctoral research associate with the Critical Zone Collaboration Networks's Big Data Cluster. My aim is to develop a predictive understanding of watershed behavior to understand how disturbances, such as climate and land use changes, impact water resources. In particular, I leverage complex systems tools (e.g., machine learning) with streamflow and water quality data to understand the controls on nutrient transport from landscapes to surface waters at local and continental scales. I was formerly a postdoctoral research associate with Vermont EPSCoR's Basin Resilience to Extreme Events (BREE) project. For my PhD, I studied (mucky) sediment-water interactions in shallow water bodies (i.e., small lakes, ponds, wetlands, and streams) at Michigan State University's Kellogg Biological Station. Until August 2023, you can find me working from UW-Madison's Center for Limnology as an Honorary Fellow.

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News & updates:

October 2022

  • New collaborative publication alert! Winter is changing. 40% of the US is vulnerable to water quality impacts from changing winter rain/snowmelt. Check out the news release. And the article.

August 2022

  • I've moved back to Madison, WI! I'll continue to work as a postdoc with the University of Vermont, but from UW-Madison's Center for Limnology as an Honorary Fellow. Extremely grateful to Emily Stanley for hosting me and for my UVM collaborators for helping me make this happen.

June 2022

May 2022

  • Had a great time at the 2022 Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting in Grand Rapids, MI. Presented my work on catchment controls on concentration-discharge patterns across the contiguous US. I also co-led a workshop exploring non-academic careers in aquatic sciences.

April 2022

March 2022

  • A new publication, "Preparing aquatic research for an extreme future: Call for unified definitions, tools, and approaches" was just accepted for publication in Bioscience. Very proud of this early-career team and collaboration that was initiated at Eco-DAS in 2018.

December 2021

  • Our recent paper on drivers of nitrate and phosphorus export and stoichiometry from headwater catchments published in Water Resources Research recently received the 2020 Water Resources Research Editor's Choice Award! Thankful for my great collaborators that contributed to this work. Press release here.

November 2021

  • Hot off the presses! In a recent Biogeochemistry Letters paper we examined under-ice nitrogen dynamics in two eutrophic lakes in Vermont. We found that ice cover may promote nitrate loss. Our results suggest that winters with shorter ice duration and more thaw events may result in less nitrate depletion and higher peak nitrate concentrations in shallow eutrophic lakes, with potential implications for N cycling and phytoplankton ecology.

October 2021

  • Our recent paper, Ice cover and thaw events influence nitrogen partitioning and concentration in two shallow eutrophic lakes, in Biogeochemistry letters examines N cycling under-ice during two winters and finds that changing winter conditions may affect N cycling with potential implications for aquatic N budgets and phytoplankton ecology.

September 2021

August 2021

  • As part of our Wikimedia Foundation grant, we promised to make informational videos that could be used to motivate and teach folks how to add their (and disseminate free!) aquatic science knowledge to Wikipedia. We collaborated with an incredible filmmaker, Elizabeth Joy Herzfeldt-Kamprath, to create two fun short films: a motivational one and another that introduces you to the basics of editing Wikipedia. Check them out! And use them!
  • Said farewell to VT EPSCoR's BREE summer undergraduate research interns during an awesome virtual symposium. Intern Igrena Aponte-Morrero gave an excellent presentation on her research to understand N and P cycling in a deltaic wetland complex. Looking forward to working with Igrena as we work with past intern, Ellie Sovcik, to write up a collaborative manuscript.

July 2021

May 2021

  • Looking forward to working (virtually) with two undergraduate research interns this summer: Igrena Aponte-Morrero from the Universidad Ana G. Méndez, Recinto de Cupey and Roujia Zhong from Colby College.
  • Attended the Society for Freshwater Science's Annual Meeting virtually and shared our work on using self-organizing maps to understand how event characteristics and watershed conditions influence nutrient export patterns.
  • Excited to give an invited seminar for CSU-Chico's Department of Geological & Environmental Sciences!

February 2021

  • I helped the Colby College Environmental Studies Program kick off their Spring 2021 seminar series by giving a virtual talk titled In situ sensors reveal the influence of land use and climate change on event-scale watershed nutrient exports.

January 2021

  • Julia Perdrial and I are co-facilitating PODs at UVM for the Unlearning Racism in Geoscience curriculum (URGE). URGE's primary objectives are to (1) deepen the community’s knowledge of the effects of racism on the participation and retention of Black, Brown, and Indigenous people in Geoscience, (2) draw on existing literature, expert opinions, and personal experiences to develop anti-racist policies and strategies, and (3) share, discuss, and modify anti-racist policies and strategies within a dynamic community network and on a national stage.

November 2020

  • Our WikiProject Limnology & Oceanography team just published a provocative essay in L&O Letters. In it we argue that societies, institutions, and scientists should prioritize and incentivize contributing to Wikipedia in parallel to traditional scientific outlets to increase both equity and efficiency in transferring aquatic scientific information among our community and to the public.

September 2020

  • Our new paper on drivers of nitrate and phosphorus export and stoichiometry from headwater catchments was recently published in Water Resources Research! An exciting use of optical sensor technology to estimate nitrate and phosphorus concentrations in stream water.

July 2020

May 2020

April 2020

  • Wrapped up a semester-long course on University Teaching here at UVM. I learned a lot about the neuroscience of learning and designing courses for student learning (e.g., backward design, universal design for learning, inclusive learning, sentipensante pedagogy, and much more!).
  • Congratulations to University of Vermont honors college student, Ellie Sovcik! She successfully defended her honors thesis "Longitudinal and seasonal carbon and nutrient patterns in the Missisquoi River Deltaic Wetland" today. She did excellent work and we were so glad to collaborate with her. Good luck with your future endeavors, Ellie!

March 2020

January 2020

December 2019

  • Erin, Brittany, Andrew, and I all presented posters at the AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco!

October 2019

  • Our work on decomposition in flocculent sediments was just published in Freshwater Science. Check it out here! Turns out there's a lot happening in the mucky ooze you usually avoid in your favorite body of water.

August 2019

  • Summer flew by! We bid farewell to another fantastic group of interns at the VT EPSCoR BREE undergraduate research symposium.

May 2019

  • VT EPSCoR BREE undergraduate interns are here for the summer! Looking forward to working with 5 new interns on the ecology team.
  • Attended the Society for Freshwater Science's annual meeting in Salt Lake City. Presented our VT EPSCoR BREE research on storm-driven N and P export patterns. Another novel use of s::can optical sensors - predicting in-stream P concentrations!
  • We completed our first longitudinal survey of the Missisquoi River deltaic wetland! Led by UVM undergraduate, Ellie Sovcik, this research focuses on how a deltaic wetland at a tributary-lake transition affects riverine nutrient loading to the lake. We're also testing the utility of high-frequency sensors to reveal longitudinal patterns in nutrient concentrations. At least 3 more sampling trips to go this year!

April 2019

March 2019

  • Our VT EPSCoR BREE ecology team is busy sampling snowmelt and rain-on-snow events in the Lake Champlain Basin.

February 2019

  • Back into the classroom with aquatic macroinvertebrates! This time the outreach team from VT EPSCoR CWDD and I visited 6th graders at Hunt Middle School here in Burlington.

January 2019

December 2018

  • I spent 2 days at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute's Plasma Mass Spectrometry Facility analyzing stream and groundwater samples for trace metals on their ICP-MS. New skills! Thankful for the kindness and patience of the ICP-MS master, Gretchen Swarr.

November 2018

  • I participated in my first Policy and Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC) Meeting hosted by VT EPSCoR. These biannual meetings offer a space for policy makers, decision makers, researchers, federal agency representatives, town and local officials from around the state and region to convene and take an active role in interactive sessions surrounding the Lake Champlain Basin.
  • Winter is coming. Time to pull our in-stream (s::can) sensors from our forested (Wade Brook), agricultural (Hungerford Brook), and urban (Potash Brook) sites. Sure wish we could find a way to keep these in all winter!
  • Participated in the first WikiProject: Limnology and Oceanography edit-a-thon on Cyber Monday! The effort was spearheaded by USGS post-doc, Jake Zwart, in collaboration with a great team of recent EcoDAS XIII alum. Our mission statement:
    • As a working group of aquatic scientists, we aim to improve the quality and quantity of publicly available information on Wikipedia. Our goal is to encourage scholars to bring disciplinary expertise to the public sphere in an open-source and accessible manner.
    • Check out our WikiProject page and follow along on Twitter!

October 2018

September 2018

  • Participated in my first K-12 outreach with VT EPSCoR CWDD at Flynn Elementary School. Brought aquatic macroinvertebrates to the classroom. Nice opportunity to get back into K-12 STEM outreach again!

June 2018

  • I'm officially a post-doc! Spent the first weeks of June visiting our headwater stream monitoring sites and getting out on Lake Champlain to check out our buoys in Missisquoi and St. Albans Bays. The VT EPSCoR team has quite the network of water and environmental sensors! Can't wait to work some of these data very soon!

April 2018

  • I successfully defended my dissertation! Officially the floc doc! Many thanks to my advisor, Steve Hamilton, my committee, and everyone at KBS for all of the support along the way. So lucky to have spent the last several years mucking around in some of the most beautiful and often overlooked water bodies in southwestern Michigan.