I am a highly-motivated, big-picture thinker. I am a leader and able to communicate and propel great visions forward. I have a passion for making teams stick. I work hard and I work fast. I have experience in Northern environmental science, mathematics, and data analysis. I ask questions and write like a scientist. I take risks like an artist. I believe that planning is everything, but understand that the plan is nothing. I make things happen. I have a passion for entrepreneurship and continual improvement of protocols, processes, and self. I communicate complex ideas to everyone from high school and graduate students, to professional scientists, to my friends, and sometimes even to my grandmother. I am hoping to gain experience and broaden my perspectives in a business or consulting environment. In June, 2016, I joined the social policy research network of New Brunswick, Canada as the Community Outreach Coordinator.
PhD – Microbial respiration and oxygen dynamics in permafrost thaw lakes
Permafrost holds half of the world’s carbon, and mobilisation of this material would result in increases to atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Thawing permafrost as a result of climate change is already being observed throughout northern, subarctic Quebec. Throughout the past 50 years, the southern limit of discontinuous permafrost has moved 130 km northwards and thaw lakes have become larger and more abundant. Respiration processes decomposes permafrost organic matter and release greenhouse gases into the surrounding aquatic environment. It also influences the growth of heterotrophic organisms such as bacteria. Oxygen serves as a master variable controlling many biogeochemical and biotic processes. Though respiration is the largest sink process for organic matter in the biosphere, it remains the largest gap in our understanding of the global carbon cycle. For Northern ecosystems, studies have been completed to investigate carbon dioxide and methane emissions, however no studies have investigated oxygen dynamics in these systems which are largely untouched by human. Throughout my PhD work, I have studied and measured respiration and bacterial communities in thermokarst thaw lakes.
MSc – Paleolimnological variations of fossil pigments in Southern Quebec lakes
Cyanobacterial blooms can be a major water-quality issue due to their potential to produce toxins, influence the concentration of oxygen within the water column, and reduce recreational activities and property value. My masters research focused on long-term dynamics of cyanobacterial blooms in freshwater lakes using evidence from lake sediments. The purpose of my master’s research project was to perform chemical and historical sediment analysis to explain changes in the lake water quality and to predict near-future decline in water quality. The skills I developed included quantitative analysis and presentation of large data sets, assessing mitigation measures aimed at protecting the lakes, and presenting my work to a wide range of scientific and non-scientific audiences. One of my publications resulted a presentation to a citizen’s group near Quebec City where I presented ideas on better strategies to reduce the impacts of eutrophication of the lake.