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Graduate Students

Arash

Arash Amiri, PhD Student

arash.amiri@umbc.edu

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Advisor: Junmei Tang

 

Education History:

B.S., Civil Engineering (Minor: Surveying), University of Isfahan (Isfahan, Iran)

M.S., Geomatics, Lund University (Lund, Sweden)

Research Interests: GIS (Geographical Information Systems), Remote Sensing, WebGIS, Spatial Analysis and GIS Algorithms, Spatial Databases

In my bachelor I studied different subjects such as Land Surveying, Geodesy, Satellite Geodesy and GPS, Geodetic Network Analysis, Computer Aided Cartography, and Photogrammetry. In my master I studied and I did research in Geographical Information Systems (GIS), Spatial Databases, Algorithms in GIS, Spatial Analysis, Remote Sensing and Web GIS (Internet GIS). My great interest in programming has pushed me to work regularly with many programming languages and Web tools. My master thesis project was part of another bigger project called Haptimap -funded by “The European Commission in the Seventh Framework Programme” which is a consortium of some European big universities and institutes- I designed an algorithm for pedestrian routing (path finding) with an optimization for open areas and I proposed and implemented an architecture for Web Service Composition (Service Chaining) for making a fully-automated routing system.

Publication Information:

Jeihani, M., Zhang, L., Ardeshiri, A., Amiri, A., Baghaei, B., Nasri, A., and Zamir, R. K., 2013. Development of a Framework for Transit-Oriented Development (TOD). State Highway Administration Research Report. University of Maryland College Park, Morgan State University, Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA); September 2013, Baltimore, MD.

Amiri, A., 2012. “Automatic Geospatial Web Service Composition for Developing a Routing System”, Master Thesis Project, Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystems Science, Lund University, Sweden. http://lup.lub.lu.se/luur/download?func=downloadFile&recordOId=2596622&fileOId=2596629.

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John Brooks Binau, M.S. Student
UMBC Shriver Peaceworker Fellow

john.binau@umbc.edu

Hometown: Hagerstown, MD

Advisors: Maggie Holland

Education History:

B.S., Communications, Ithaca College

Research Interests: Agroecology, Permaculture, Food Systems, Sustainable Agriculture

Thesis Research: My thesis project uses a mixed-methods approach to measure the relationship between urban farms and food security in Baltimore City.  The first phase of my research will focus on quantifying and mapping the flow of produce from urban farms through their points of distribution and to their end-consumers (customers and donor recipients). This will allow us to spatially define the extent of the urban farm foodshed in Baltimore. The second phase of this research will assess the degree to which these urban farms help alleviate food insecurity and strengthen in-situ community resilience with a particular focus on the foodscape of neighborhoods located near urban farms.

Committee members: Dawn Biehler, David Lansing
Publications & Presentations:
Peace Corps Connect 2014 – Nashville: “Urban Farm Consumers in Baltimore City: A Foodshed & Foodscape Analysis”

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Amy Bleich, M.S. Student

ableich1@umbc.edu

Advisor: Jeffrey Halverson

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Dorothy Borowy, PhD Student

bdoro1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Advisor: Christopher Swan

 

Education History:

B.S., Biology, Towson University

M.S., Biology-Ecology, Towson University

Research Interests: Community Ecology, Community Assembly, Dispersal, Functional Traits, Disturbance, Interspecific Interactions

I have a broad interest in ecological community structure and function. My research focus includes understanding plant community assembly and how these communities interact with biotic dispersal vectors and herbivores. I am particularly interested in how these interactions are influenced by disturbance and ultimately how this structures communities.

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Tiffany Branum, M.S. Student

tbranum1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Takoma Park, MD

Advisor: Dawn Biehler

 

Education History:

B.A., History and International Studies, Southern Adventist University

Research Interests: Human and urban geographies, food studies, identity studies (race, gender, class), public markets, public and shared spaces, urban design

My current research explores the impacts of redevelopment on the social dynamics of public markets.

Website: http://umbc.academia.edu/TiffanyBranum

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Peter George Chirico, PhD Student

pchiric1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Vienna, VA

Advisor: Andrew J. Miller

 

Education History:

B.A., Geography, Mary Washington College

M.A., Geography, University of South Carolina

Research Interests: Geomorphology, Digital elevation modeling, Remote sensing, GIS, Natural resources

I am currently employed with the USGS in Reston, Virginia where I have been working on issues related to terrain analysis and natural resources. My research combines the use of geomorphological mapping, remote sensing, and field surveys, as techniques for investigating and assessing artisanally mined diamond deposits in central and western Africa. The work has direct implications for natural resource management, development, and in preventing the trade in conflict minerals and “blood diamonds.”

Selected Publications:

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

2013, Malpeli, K.C., and Chirico, P.G., The influence of geomorphology on the role of women at artisanal and small-scale mine sites: Natural Resources Forum, v. 31, no. 1, p. 43-54. (available online at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1477-8947.12009/full).

2012, Harrison, R.W., Tsiolakis, E., Stone, B.D., Lord, A., McGeehin, J.P., Mahan, S.A., and Chirico, P., Late Pleistocene and Holocene uplift history of Cyprus—implications for active tectonics along the southern margin of the Anatolian microplate: Geological Society of London, Special Publications, v. 372, 25 p.

2012, Chirico, P.G., Malpeli, K.C., and Trimble, S.M., Accuracy evaluation of an ASTER-derived Global Digital Elevation Model (GDEM) Version 1 and Version 2 for two sites in Western Africa: GIScience and Remote Sensing, v. 49, no. 6, p. 775-801. (available online at http://bellwether.metapress.com/content/p2530n272827681p/).

USGS Publications

2013, Chirico, P.G., Malpeli, K.C., and Moran, T.W., Reconnaissance investigation of the alluvial gold deposits in the North Takhar Area of Interest, Afghanistan: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2013-1180, 14 p. (available online at http://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/ofr20131180).

2013, Malpeli, K.C., Chirico, P.G., and McLoughlin, I.H., Reconnaissance investigation of the placer gold deposits in the Zarkashan Area of Interest, Ghazni Province, Afghanistan: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2013-1179, 12 p. (available online at http://pubs.er.usgs.gov/publication/ofr20131179).

2013, Casey, B.N., and Chirico, P.G., Topographic and hydrographic GIS datasets for the Afghan Geological Survey and U.S. Geological Survey 2013 mineral areas of interest: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2013-1124, 16 p. (available online at http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2013/1124/).

2012, Chirico, P.G., Malpeli, K.C., Van Bockstael, Mark, Diaby, Mamadou, Cissé, Kabinet, Diallo, T.A., and Sano, Mahmoud, Alluvial diamond resource potential and production capacity assessment of Guinea: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2012-5256, 49 p. (available online at http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2012/5256/).

2011, Chirico, P.G., Stamm, R.G., Moran, T.W., and Chaihorsky, Alexander, Chapter 12A. Summary of the North Takhar Placer Gold Area of Interest, in Peters, S.G., King, T.V.V., Mack, T.J., Chornack, M.P., eds., Summaries of important areas for mineral investment and production opportunities of nonfuel minerals in Afghanistan, Vol. 2: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2011-1204, p. 951-968.

2010, Chirico, P.G., Semiautomated mapping of surficial geologic deposits from Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and hydrologic network data, from Digital Mapping Techniques ’09—Workshop Proceedings’: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2010-1335. (available online at http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2010/1335).

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Peter Revere Claggett, PhD Student

Pclag1@umbc.edu, pclaggett@usgs.gov, pclagget@chesapeakebay.net

Hometown:  Stevensville, MD

Advisor: Matthew E. Baker

Education History:

B.A., Environmental Sciences, University of California, Berkeley

M.A., Geography, Miami University (Ohio)

M.En., Environmental Sciences, Miami University (Ohio)

Research Interests: Hydrologic impacts of impervious surface patterns, Monitoring, understanding, and modeling regional land use/cover change, Assessing the impacts of land use/cover change on water quality, quantity, and wildlife habitats

The hydrologic impacts of roads, rooftops, parking lots, and other impervious surfaces have been well documented.  By preventing rainfall from infiltrating into the ground, impervious surfaces reduce groundwater recharge and increase the rate and volume of surface runoff.  This phenomenon can increase stream discharge resulting in accelerated erosion of stream banks and transport of sediment.  However, not all streams respond similarly to increases in impervious surfaces nor do all impervious surfaces contribute equally to changes in stream flow.  Watershed dimensions, slope, lithology, soils, channel and floodplain configuration, and other factors affect local hydrologic responses to land use/cover change.  Variations in stormwater management and the hydrologic connectivity of impervious surfaces via storm drain networks or proximity further affect the relationship between impervious surfaces and stream flow.  I plan to explore this more nuanced relationship in the Chesapeake Bay watershed to inform both stormwater management and land use planning decisions.

Publication Information:

Claggett, P. R., Irani, F. M., and R.L. Thompson, 2013. Estimating the Extent of Impervious Surfaces and Turf Grass across Large Regions. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Vol. 49(5): 1752-1688 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jawr.12110)

Sohl, T.L., and Claggett, P.R., 2013, Clarity versus complexity: Land-use modeling as a practical tool for decision-makers.  Journal of Environmental Management 129: 235-243

Claggett, P.R, and Thompson, R.L. eds., 2012, Proceedings of the workshop on alternative futures- Accounting for growth in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2012–1216, 29 p., [http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2012/1216].

Claggett, P.R., Okay, J.A., and S.V. Stehman, 2010. Monitoring Regional Ripairan Forest Cover Change Using Stratified Sampling and Mulitresolution Imagery. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Vol. 46(2): 334-343.

Irani, Fred, M., and Claggett, Peter, R., 2010, Chesapeake Bay Watershed Land Cover Change Data Series:  U.S. Geological Data Series 505.

Jantz, C.A., S.J. Goetz, D.I. Donato, and P.R. Claggett, 2010. Designing and Implementing a Regional Urban Modeling System Using the SLEUTH Cellular Urban Model. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, Vol. 34(1): 1-16.

Claggett, P.R., Jantz, C.A., Goetz, S.J., and Bisland, Carin, 2004, Assessing Development Pressure in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed – An Evaluation of Two Land-use Change Models.  Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, Vol. 94(1-3): 129-146.

Website: http://www.usgs.gov/climate_landuse/lcs/projects/lulc_cbay.asp

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Jonathan Dandois, PhD Candidate

jdando1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Bethesda, MD

Advisor: Erle Ellis

 

Education History:

B.S., Geography and Environmental Systems, UMBC

Certificate of Geographic Information Systems, UMBC

Research Interests: Forest ecology, vegetation structure, computer vision, remote sensing, phenology, 3D, forest dynamics, Arducopter, UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems), multirotors, Ecosynth

I am interested in applying remote sensing and computer vision techniques to solving problems in ecology and environmental science by developing new, better, or just simpler tools that improve on current methods.  I want to work with multidisciplinary teams of ecologists and computer scientists in the lab, at the computer, and in the field to tackle difficult problems related to measuring and observing ecosystem patterns and processes.

Publication Information:

Dandois, J.P. and Erle C. Ellis (2013). High spatial resolution three-dimensional mapping of vegetation spectral dynamics using computer vision. Remote Sensing of Environment. 136, 259-276. DOI: 10.1016/j.rse.2013.04.005 (available here)

Dandois, J.P. and E.C. Ellis (2010). Remote Sensing of Vegetation Structure and Using Computer Vision. Remote Sensing, 2(4): 1157-1176. DOI: 10.3390/rs2041157

Websites: https://sites.google.com/site/jonathandandois/http://ecosynth.org/

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Amanda Davis, PhD Candidate

amarob1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

Advisors: Dawn Biehler & Robert Neff

 

Education History:

B.A., Anthropology, University of Oklahoma

M.A., International Peace & Conflict Resolution, Arcadia University

M.S., Environmental Sciences and Policy, Johns Hopkins

Research Interests: Urban geography, Human geography, social and spatial justice.

My research interests focus on the impact of changing residential and workplace patterns on issues of employment opportunity and accessibility. I am also interested in issues of social and spatial justice.

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Mitchell Donovan, M.S. Student

mdonovan@umbc.edu

Hometown: Ellicott City, MD

Advisor: Andrew J. Miller

 

Education History:

B.S., Geography and Environmental Science, UMBC

Research Interests: Fluvial morphology, Geomorphology, Sediment transport, Geographic Information Systems, Cartography

I am currently investigating a variety of topics within the breadth of geomorphology and fluvial morphology. These areas, encompassed by my current research, include studying sediment transport, sources, and storage throughout the Piedmont, the ongoing impacts of legacy sediment, and the role of milldams in Piedmont floodplain formation. Outside of these topics, I am developing future plans within cartography, geographic information systems, and how to communicate science more clearly to non-scientists.

WebsitesBehance PortfolioUSGS Professional PageUMBC Top 30 Class BiographyLinkedInabout.me

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Sam Dupre, PhD Student

sdupre1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Lawrenceville, NJ

Advisor: Maggie Holland

 

Education History:

B.S., Animal Science, University of Vermont

M.S., Applied Ecology and Conservation Biology, Frostburg State University

Research Interests: Livelihood creation and empowerment; international sustainable natural resource management policy; forest community species dynamics, restoration, and degradation prevention.

The use of modern ecological science to address human/biodiversity conservation issues around the world through practical mechanisms involving agriculture and entrepreneurship.

Publication Information:

Dupre, CM, R Libman, SI Dupre, JM Katz, M Rybinnik, & T Kwiatkowski. (2013). Stroke Chameleons. Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases.

Website: www.yonsoproject.org

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Janet Galway Fairbank, M.S. Student (accelerated)

janetf1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Laurel, Maryland

Advisor: Junmei Tang

 

Education History:

B.S., Environmental Science, UMBC

B.S., Business, Towson State University

Research Interests: Forest Ecology, Invasive Ecology, Land Use Change, Climate Change

Interested in ecological interactions and global change, specifically the effects of anthropogenic disturbance, land use change, and climate change on forested ecosystems and the creation of forest edges

Publication Information:

Fairbank, Janet. 2010. Anthropogenic Biomes: A High School Biology Unit Plan. Prepared in consultation with Erle Ellis and Sari Bennett. Published online October 1, 2010.(http://ecotope.org/anthromes/education/anthromes_hs_lesson_plan_2010_10_01.pdf)

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Michael Glassman, M.S. Student

zx52530@umbc.edu

Hometown: Carney, MD

Advisor: Matthew E. Baker

 

Education History:

B.S., Geography, UMBC

Certificate in Geographic Information Science, UMBC

Research Interests: Spatial patterns of land use, ground water flows, nutrient fluxes in streams

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Anna Johnson, PhD Candidate

annaj1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Fairfield, PA

Advisor: Christopher Swan

 

Education History:

B.A., Liberal Arts, St. John’s College

Research Interests: Biodiversity, Community Ecology, Urban Sustainability, Urban Vacant Land Management and Remediation, Citizen Science

I study the ecological processes that drive the assembly of plant communities, using herbaceous plant communities in vacant lots as my model system. I use a combination of field surveys and experiments to test and extend basic ecological theory about the limits on species coexistence in urban systems at multiple spatial scales. I am particularly interested in connecting quantitative ecological research results to urban sustainability initiatives and engaging underserved populations in the practice and outcomes of research.

Publication Information:

A. L. Johnson and C. M. Swan. (in press). Drivers of Vegetation Species Diversity and Composition in Urban Ecosystems In Urban Wildlife Science: Theory and Practice. McCleery, R. et al. (editors).

Website: http://biodiversity.umbc.edu/

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Alexandra Krach, M.S. Student (accelerated)

akrach1@umbc.edu

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Garth Lindner, PhD Candidate

glind1@umbc.edu

Advisor: Andrew J. Miller

Research Interests: Stream restoration, stormwater management, floodplain modeling and management, hydrologic modeling, ecosystem services

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Jared Margulies, PhD Student

jmargulies@umbc.edu

Hometown: Columbus, Ohio

Advisor: Erle Ellis

 

Education History:

B.A., Anthropology, with Environmental Studies, Goucher College

M.Sc., Biodiversity, Conservation and Management, University of Oxford

Research Interests : Political ecology, Biodiversity conservation,  Conservation in human-modified landscapes, Human-wildlife interactions, Conservation governance, More-than-human geographies

I consider myself as an environmental geographer broadly interested in conservation geographies, with an emerging interest in the meaning of the Anthropocene for biodiversity conservation and the persistence of wildlife across heterogeneous landscapes.  My previous work has centered on megafauna conservation and tolerance within the tea plantation landscapes of the Nilgiris District of Tamil Nadu in the Western Ghats of southwest India. For my dissertation I am building on this work in studying wildlife conservation governance and policy in southwest India.

Publication Information:

Kim, B.F.; Poulsen, M.N; Margulies, J.D.; Dix, K.; Palmer, A.M.; Nachman, K. Urban Community Gardeners’ Knowledge and Perceptions of Soil Contaminant Risks.  In Press for PLoS One.

Love, D. C., Breaud, A., Burns, S., Margulies, J., Romano, M., & Lawrence, R. (2012). Is the three-foot bicycle passing law working in Baltimore, Maryland? Accident Analysis & Prevention48, 451-456.

Margulies, J. No-Till agriculture in the USA. Organic Fertilisation, Soil Quality and Human Health. Sustainable Agriculture Reviews, 2012, Volume 9, 11-30, DOI: 10.1007/978-94-007-4113-3_2

Rule, A.M.; Geyh, A.S; Ramos-Bonilla, J.P.; Mihalic, J.; Margulies, J.D.; L.M. Polyak; Kesavan, J.; Breysse, P.N. (2010). Design and Characterization of a Sequential Cyclone System for the Collection of Bulk Particulate Matter. Journal of Environmental Monitoring. 12, 1807-1814. DOI: 10.1039/c0em00034e

Franco, M.; Herring, S. (Eds.) (2010). The Baltimore City Food Environment. Published by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. Available from http://www.jhsph.edu/bin/k/o/BaltimoreCityFoodEnvironment.pdf

Website: www.ecotope.org/people/margulies

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Alex Martin, M.S. Student

amart3@umbc.edu

Hometown: Chantilly, VA

Advisor: Jeffrey Halverson

 

Education History:

B.S., Meteorology, Pennsylvania State University

Research Interests: Tropical cyclogenesis, Boundary layer wind structure, Wind farm risk assessment, Wind energy resource assessment and analysis

My primary interest lies in atmospheric boundary layer wind analysis. By studying tropical cyclogenesis, I hope to gain a better understanding of what drives the strengthening of these systems and apply this to future risk analysis.

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Jennifer Mayo, M.S. Student

jennifermayo2@gmail.com

Hometown: Columbus, Ohio

Advisor: Maggie Holland

 

Education History:

B.A., International Studies, The Ohio State University

Research Interests:  I am interested in designing and implementing impact evaluation studies for environmental and agricultural projects.

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Laura Merner, PhD Candidate

LMerner1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Kinnelon, NJ

Advisor: Andrew J. Miller

Education History:

Bachelors Degree, Environmental Science and Geography, Clark University

Research Interests: Flood Hazards, Vulnerability and Risk, Community Based Participatory Research, Critical Geography, Human-Environment Relations, Historical Materialism, Post-Structural Understandings of Nature, Appalachian Studies

My research explores the interdisciplinary nature of flood hazards to better understand how vulnerability is constructed, perceived and legitimized.

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Miller_headshotAndrew D. Miller, M.S. student

am22@umbc.edu

Hometown: Akron, PA

Advisor: Matthew Baker

 

Education History:

B.S., Biology, Ursinus College (Double major: German)

M.S., Environmental & Forest Biology, SUNY-ESF

Research Interests: stream ecology, landscape ecology, community ecology, population dynamics, fisheries management

I am interested in factors that affect patterns of aquatic community composition and population dynamics across a range of scales. I address these questions using a combination of GIS, field work, and modeling. I am particularly interested in the spatial and temporal dynamics of riverine communities, and how the processes that drive these changes differ based on properties of the stream network and surrounding landscape.

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Aaron Poyer, PhD Student

apoyer1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Ithaca, NY

Advisor: Jeffrey Halverson

Education History:

A.S., Math/Sciences, Tompkins Cortland Community College

B.S., Meteorology, SUNY Oswego

M.S., Environmental Biology, Hood College

M.Cert., Project Management, The George Washington University

Research Interests:

I am currently working on pre-dissertation concept exploration research into the interconnections between the geography and atmospheric regimes of the Baltimore/Washington region, particularly the impacts these have on lightning distribution and initiation or enhancement.

I am currently a full time employee of the National Weather Service; I began working on algorithm and sensor development for ASOS program and later moved into testing software and hardware for the Upper Air (weather balloon) program.

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Daniel Schall, M.S. Student

dschall1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Gaithersburg, MD

Advisor: David Lansing

Education History:

B.S., International Relations, Salisbury University (Minor: Ethnic and Intercultural Conflict)

Research Interests:

I am serving as a social scientist for a USDA funded grant, “Watershed Diagnostics for Improved Adoption of Management Practices: Integrating Biophysical and Social Factors.”

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Sierra Shamer, M.S. Student

sierra3@umbc.edu

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Advisors: David Lansing & Maggie Holland

 

Education History:

B.A., Environmental Studies,  UMBC

Research Interests: Conservation & Development Policy, Political Ecology, Environmental Economics

My current research and academic interests are focused on conservation and development policy, implementation, and outcomes for both the natural world and human society.  Specifically, I study the payments for ecosystem services policy in Costa Rica, investigating how the translation of theory, to policy, to program implementation determines the perception of policy success and its reality on the ground.

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Marlie Somers, M.S. Student

somers3@umbc.edu

Hometown: Perry Hall, MD

Education History:

B.S., Geography and Environmental Systems, UMBC

B.A., Media & Communication Studies, UMBC

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April Sparkman, M.S. Student

asparkm1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Walkersville, MD

Advisor: Christopher Swan

Research Interests: Aquatic Ecology, Stream Ecology, Phylogenetics, Riparian Zones

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Molly Van Appledorn, PhD Candidate

mvanapp@umbc.edu

Hometown:  Holland, MI

Advisor: Matthew E. Baker

 

Education History:

B.S., Environmental Science, University of Michigan

M.S., Ecology, Utah State University

Research Interests: Watershed Ecology, Landscape Ecology, Hydrology, Riparian Ecosystems

My research interests lie at the intersection of fluvial geomorphology, plant ecology, and landscape ecology. I combine geospatial analyses, hydraulic and hydrologic modeling, and field methods to address both basic and applied questions about watershed ecology. One of the main research projects I am currently working on is understanding how functional traits of riparian plant species relate to hydrologic and hydraulic gradients. In addition to giving us more insight into the dynamic ecology of floodplain systems, the results from this study will provide ecological guidance for cost-effective reforestation projects and will identify species that may be useful in monitoring or inventorying ecosystem function.

Website: https://sites.google.com/a/umbc.edu/m-vanappledorn/

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Nicole Voelker, M.S. Student

voelker1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Advisor: Christopher Swan

Education History:

B.S., Environmental Science, Towson University

Research Interests: Aquatic ecology in built environments

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Nohemi C. A. Voglozin, PhD (Completed Fall 2013)

nohevog1@umbc.edu

Hometown: Benin, West Africa

Advisors: Sandy Parker & Laura Lewis

 

Education History:

Engineer and MS degrees, Agronomy, Management of Natural Resources; University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin

Research Interests: Agricultural Biogeography, GIS, Management of Natural resources, Crop Evolution, Crop Genetic Diversity, Plant Genetic Resources Conservation & Policy.

Ethnographic, molecular and Geographic Information Systems techniques are used in my research to gain insights into the spatial distribution of the rice genetic diversity managed at the farmer level in different ecogeographical regions in Benin, West Africa. Various methodologies are utilized and focused on three modes of inquiry: the collection of socio-economic and agro-ecological data using ethnographic surveys; molecular analysis of rice germplasm collected in the field from farmers; and the development of a Geographic Information Systems to integrate all this information to develop a base-line understanding of rice genetic resources and areas for conservation in Benin. The results can be used as part of a program to complement the rice germplasm collection and the genetic analysis ongoing in Benin, target effectively the area of greatest diversity, and identify the most effective strategy for the in situ and ex situ conservation of this diversity.

Publication Information:

Lewis, L. R. & Voglozin, N.C.A. 2014. Genetic diversity and population structure of pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum) from Sahelian Africa. In prep for: Molecular Ecology / Crop Science.

Voglozin, N.C.A. & Lewis, L. R. 2014. Analysis of the genetic variability of rice varieties in Benin, West Africa. In prep for: Molecular Ecology / Crop Science

Voglozin, N.C.A., Parker, Eugene & Lewis, L. R. 2014. In situ management of rice varieties at the farm, village and region scale in Benin, West Africa. In prep for: Conservation Biology/ Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization

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Charlie Wahl, M.S. Student

cwahl@umbc.edu

Advisor: Christopher Swan

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Chris Zink, M.S. Student (accelerated)

zink1@umbc.edu

Advisor: Christopher Swan