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Student Research

In support of interdisciplinary student training, the GCSC offers research grants to eligible graduate students. These funds are awarded in support of thesis-related research that broadens a student's disciplinary focus into a new interdisciplinary direction. Grantees present their research at our annual Environment and Sustainability Research Symposium.

Projects that have been supported by GCSC Graduate Student Research grants are listed below.

  • Abby Baka, Anthropology
    Exploring Human Responses to the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition on the Colorado Plateau

    Lacey Bishop, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Seeding a Sustainable Future: Community Importance in Regenerative Agriculture within the Tuality Plains Region of Oregon

    Kyle Gerard Brennan, Geology & Geophysics
    Decadal Study on Habitat and Production of Pacific Salmon Fisheries using Strontium Isotopes.

    Gerardo Carrillo-Cardenas, Atmospheric Sciences
    Elucidating Turbulent Layers Promoting New Particle Formation at the Southern Great Plains (SGP) Site Using the DOE ARM ArcticShark Uncrewed Aerial System

    Jessica Chaplain, Communication
    (Re)Imagining Climate Justice Trajectories: Transnational Coalitions and Worldmaking in the

    Sarah Dyer, Sociology
    Contested Waters, Settler Enclosure, Capital Expansion, and Metabolic Rifts: Colorado River Basin Water Rights for the Navajo and Gila River Nations

    Jordan Taylor Giese, Political Science
    Impacts of Legacy Uranium Processing Sites in the American West

    Jack Jurmu, School of Biological Sciences
    Climate Change Mitigation by Gut Bacteria in Herbivores

    Hayley Kievman, Anthropology
    Pleistocene-Holocene Subsistence Behaviors in Central California

    Jerald Lim, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Towards a posthuman environmental ethic and an inquiry into its manifestations in entertainment media

    Nathaniel A. Marks, Geography
    Perceptions and Impacts of K-12 School Gun Violence on Educational Choice and Community Sense of Well-being

    Talayeh Mirseyed Hosseini, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Green and Equitable TODs: Integrating Green Spaces and Transit-Oriented Developments for Social Justice

    Jessica Reimer, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Conflict in planning for climate change and sustainability: Are planners primed to make conflict productive?

    Christine Rumsey, Geology & Geophysics
    Abiotic factors affecting the abundance of food resources for birds in GSL wetlands

    Rebecca Senft, School of Biological Sciences
    The Impact of Invasive Russian Olive on Riparian Ecosystems

    Yasi Shaker, Sociology
    Combating Racial Capitalism in Praxis

    Madison Sudweeks, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Building from Extraction to Regeneration: Exploring Just Transition Praxis in Rural Utah

    Isaba Tasnim, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Integrating Wildfire Risk Management in Land Use Planning: An Evaluation of Local Land Use Plans and Zoning Codes in Los Angeles County

    Joaquin Torre, Communication
    Speaking the Language of Environmental Justice: The Case of CHamoru Sovereignty

    Blanca Yagüe, Anthropology
    Last data gathering and data digitalization for “Importance of Indigenous foods in the economy and social life of Indigenous peoples in Mitú” project

  • Ja'net Baide, Anthropology
    Human Mobility Patterns in the Face of Historic Climate Change and Disease Epidemics

    Abby Baka, Anthropology
    Exploring Human Responses to the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition on the Colorado Plateau

    Michael Broughton, Geography
    New Directions for Packrat Midden Research: Developing Isotopic Records of Long-Term Paleoclimate Change from Amberat Deposits

    Brenna Egan, Geography
    Landscape Lab Effects on Pollutant Loads on Red Butte Creek

    Sammy Fernandes, Communication
    Alternative Communication: From Mainstream Media to Frontline Indigenous

    Skylar Fetter, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Disturbances: Cultural Stratification and Contamination on the Grasse River

    Sanchaita Hazra, Economics
    Enhancing Socio-economic Sustainability with Human-AI Collaboration

    Mario Lopez-Huertas, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Communicating Indigenous Knowledges in Settler-State Planning

    Pheng Lor, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Using Community Listening Sessions to Enrich Socio-Environmental Collaboration and Change

    Esther Mathieu, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Liminal Space: Mad Studies and Wetland Ecology as Critical Design Practice

    Alyssa McGrath. Anthropology
    Food web modeling of Quaternary mammal extinctions in South Africa

    Sydney Murray, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Investigating Black Youth Nature-relatedness through Nature-Based Programs

    Rexford Osei Owusu, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Do concerns about green gentrification affect mental health and wellbeing?

    Sabrina Santos, Professional Master of Science and Technology Program
    Analysis and Cost Considerations of Seasonal Water Quality and Ecosystem Users: Freeport Engineered Wetland Monitoring at The Great Salt Lake Shoreland Nature Preserve

    Maggie Scholle, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    For the Birds?: Wastelanding at Lee Kay Ponds

    Kathryn Sokolowski, Anthropology
    Seasonal mobility of South African hunter-gathers during the MSA-LSA Transition

    Kinny Torre, Communication
    On Climate Justice: Guåhan and the Importance of Indigenous Language and Pedagogy

    Ben Williamson, Geography
    Populism and Climate Denial in Popular Music

    Natalie Winward, Geography
    Utilizing paleoecological techniques to inform sustainable land management

    Blanca Yagüe, Anthropology
    Interview transcriptions for “Importance of Indigenous foods in the economy and social life of Indigenous peoples in Mitú” project

    Anahi Yerman, Anthropology
    Accuracy of projected risk sensitivity on actualized behavior following an ecological shock

    Qicheng Zeng, Geology & Geophysics
    Improving Groundwater Flow Estimates of Salt Lake Valley from Seismic Imaging


  • Connor Davis, Anthropology
    How rural ranching communities manipulate herd management strategies in response to drought in Baja California Sur, Mexico

    Austin Green, Biology
    Assessing the Effectiveness of the Parley’s Summit Wildlife Overpass

    Stella Mosher, Geography
    Fire in the Fynbos: A high-resolution investigation into climate-fire-vegetation-human links over millennia in the hyper biodiverse fynbos biome, South Africa

    Kathryn Sokolowski, Anthropology
    Resolving Pleistocene herbivore dietary ecology in the fynbos biome (Western Cape Province, South Africa)

    Xuan (Karen) Zhang, Sociology
    How Have Economic Growth and Industrial Development Affected the Environment and Population Health in China? A Quantitative Analysis at the Provincial Level from 2001-2018

    Derek Halm, Philosophy
    Investigating Change and Hybridization in Two Utah Toad Species

    Dallas Herndon, Music
    Valley: Three Corners of Our Room; An Interdisciplinary Work for Chamber Choir, Solo Instruments, and Electronics

    Tasnim Tarannum Isaba, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Assessing the Potential Feasibility of Planned Retreat against Emerging Wildfires in the USA: A Case Study of Marshall Wildfire, Colorado

    Fiona Summers, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Indigenizing the Junior Ranger Booklet at Antelope Island State Park in collaboration with the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Nation

    Amy Collins, Professional Master of Science & Technology
    Understanding the effectiveness and environmental economic considerations of engineered wetlands at Great Salt Lake Shorelands Nature Preserve

    Tara Hetz,  Parks, Recreation & Tourism
    A Gateway Community's Journey to Destination Stewardship

    Kyle Kittelberger, Biology
    Tying the Breeding Origin of Migratory Birds During Fall Migration in Utah Amid Ongoing Climatic Changes through Stable Isotope Analyses of Feather Samples

    Kaedan O'Brien, Anthropology
    Reconstructing paleoclimate, seasonality, and ancient migratory systems in the Late Pleistocene of the eastern Lake Victoria Basin, Kenya

    Baylee Olds, Geology & Geophysics
    Landscape, Climate, and Radiation Controls on Net Snow Water Availability

    Madelyn Purnell, Biology
    Adapting to Change: Evolutionary History of Extremophile Nematodes in the Great Salt Lake

    Susana Velasquez-Franco, Geography
    Listening to Las Lagunas: a long-term perspective applied to environmental management in the Equatorial Andes

    Meg Wolf, Geology & Geophysics
    Advancing process understanding of how catchment groundwater storage buffers streamflow during drought

  • Maria Archibald, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Learning by Doing: Developing a Collaborative Climate Justice Curriculum for Young Activists

    Abby Baka, Anthropology
    Prey Choice and Technological Investment at North Creek Shelter, UT: A Behavioral Ecological Analysis of Peleoarchaic and Early Archaic Lithic Technology

    Jeremiah Bernau, Geology & Geophysics
    How will saline landscapes change during the Anthropocene? Using environmental records from the Bonneville Salt Flats to understand the effect of changing water availability and climate upon saline landscapes.

    Savannah Bommarito, Geography
    Paleoecological Contributions to Land Management at Dugway Proving Ground, Utah

    Archana Dahal, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Cyanotoxin impact on ecosystem functionality and environmental sustainability

    Hannah Hartley, Geology & Geophysics
    Analyzing lead isotope ratios from sediment traps to determine signals of cyclic seasonal sedimentation in Lake Powell, UT

    Noah Hirshorn, Atmospheric Sciences
    Funding to Provide Cartridges for Biogenic Gas Measurements at Storm Peak Laboratory

    Hayley Kievman, Anthropology
    An investigation into pre-contact indigenous resource management in coastal California

    Maya Kobe-Rundio, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Notes from the Landscape of Grief: A Multispecies Ethnography

    Samuel Lopez, Geology & Geophysics
    Developing a method for mercury stable isotope analysis in saline waters with direct applications to a local mercury-impaired ecosystem (Great Salt Lake, Utah)

    Bishav Bhattarai, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Study of virus-host interaction in the anaerobic digester using metagenomics for optimization of sustainable waste management and renewable energy production

    Blanca Yagüe, Anthropology
    Importance of Indigenous foods in the economy and social life of Indigenous peoples in Mitú

    Kyle Brennan, Geology & Geophysics
    Developing Strontium Isotope Maps to Sustainably Manage Salmon of the Taku River Fishery. (British Columbia & Alaska)

    Jessica Chaplain, Communication
    Resilence or Vunerability? On the Frontline of Climate Solutions

    Sua Kim, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Assessing the economic recovery of local business interruption after disasters, Salt Lake City, Utah

    Kaedan O'Brien, Anthropology
    Tracking Late Quaternary Ungulate Migration and Seasonality in Kenya Using Stable Isotopes

    Abeer Sohrab, Civil & Environmental Engineering

    Hannah Taub, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Developing Indigenous History Programming at Antelope Island State Park

  • Madeleine Bavley, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    DEEPTHROAT HORIZON: A Petro Porno [a film project commentary on petroleum culture]

    Dong-ah Choi, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Street greenery for active living communities: the relationship of physical and outdoor activity to automatically measured eye-level street greenery

    Riley Finnegan, Geology & Geophysics
    Ambient Resonance of Indian Rock Arch, Yosemite National Park

    Austin Green, Biology
    Where the Wild Things Are: How Species Navigate the Wasatch-Urban Interface

    Jory Lerback, Geology & Geophysics
    Investigation of water resources used by Holocene foragers in the Bonneville basin

    Keaton Tremble, Biology
    Impact of ectomycorrhizal fungal diversity and competition on aspen gene regulation

    Peter Yaworsky, Anthropology
    Risk Mitigation in a Changing Environment: A Subsistence Farmer Perspective

    Natalie Blanton, Sociology "
    Wombs Day Preppers": Climate Anxiety, Environmental Change, and Childbearing in Salt Lake County, Utah

    Ruby Diaz, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Bioremediation of PFAS (Per and polyfluoroalkyl substances) using a combination of fungi and bacteria.

    Kevin Fagundo Ojeda, City & Metropolitan Planning
    En Masse: (Dis)placement and (dis)organization in Holyoke

    Brenden Fischer-Femal, Geology & Geophysics
    Examining paleosol chemistry to understand how soils responded to warm time periods in Earth history.

    Dale Forrister, Biology
    DNA Barcoding of Lepidoptera to Understand Insect Seasonality in Yasuni Ecuador

    Soklida Hong, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Understanding Inhibition of Anammox Activity by Nitrite, Sulfide and Recalcitrant Carbons at a Functional Gene Level

    Kelly Kerr, Biology
    A multi-disciplinary approach to determining aspen drought tolerance and growth

    Dylan Klure, Biology
    Investigating the Evolutionary Innovations of a Small Rodent to Novel Environmental Conditions

    Jiada Li, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Smart real-time control to enhance flooding resilience and stormwater sustainability

  • Devon Cantwell, Political Science
    City Climate Action Planning Processes and Networking

    Kasey Cole, Anthropology
    Oxygen Isoscape Map of Northeastern California

    Dale Forrister, Biology
    Reaching new heights: plant-herbivore interactions in the rainforest canopy

    Austin Green, Biology
    Wasatch Wildlife Watch: A Community Science Approach to Investigating the Relationship between Humans and Wildlife in the Wasatch Mountain Wildland-Urban Interface

    Jory Lerback, Geology & Geophysics
    Developing an isotopic proxy for paleo-springwater mean residence times using carbon isotopes

    Philip-Peter Maxeiner, Geology & Geophysics
    Carbon and Strontium Chemo-Stratigraphy to Constrain the Triassic-Jurassic Boundary in Central Peru

    Monte Neate-Clegg, Biology
    Elevational shifts in an Afrotropical bird community: a 38-year resurvey

    Kaedan O'Brien, Anthropology
    Multiproxy assessment of African fossil horse dietary ecology

    Peter Yaworsky, Anthropology
    Risk Mitigation in a Changing Environment: A Subsistence Farmer Perspective

    Benjamin Breeden, Geology & Geophysics
    Paleoenvironmental and biotic responses to the Toarcian Ocean Anoxic Event: New insights from southwest Japan (Toyota Town, Yamaguchi Prefecture)

    Natalie Blanton, Sociology
    Wombs Day Preppers: Climate Change and Childbearing in Salt Lake County, Utah

    Margaret Doolin, Biology
    Desert herbivory in the age of global climate change

    Susana Velásquez-Franco, Geography
    Listening to the Lagoon: Long-term Ecology to Improve Tropical Forests Environmental Management.

  • Elizabeth Berg, Geology & Geophysics
    Seismic Imaging the Subsurface of the Bonneville Salt Flats

    Jeremiah Bernau, Geology & Geophysics
    How are evaporation, dust events, and anthropogenic uses at the Bonneville Salts related? – An interdisciplinary project to explore ties between salt crust evaporation rates, human uses, and dust storms at the Bonneville Salt Flats

    James Blevins, Anthropology
    Sustainable Intertidal Resource Use: Developing Modern Baselines to Explain Prehistoric Human Impacts

    Meaghan McKasy, Communication
    The Effect of Emotion, Knowledge, and Media Use on Attitudes and Public Opinion of Carbon Neutral Pledges

    Travis Morrison, Engineering
    A methodology for acquiring spatial surface reflectance utilizing UAVs

    Emily Post, Anthropology
    Effects of risk types on social support network structure in an Afro-Caribbean community impacted by Hurricane Maria

    Marian Rice, Political Science
    The Energy-Water Nexus: Hydraulic Fracturing in the Uinta Basin

    Sierra Sahulka, Engineering
    Comparative Metagenomic Analysis of Genotypic and Phenotypic Antibiotic Resistance Between Four Distinct Sub-Watersheds

    Emerson Arehart, Science
    Conservation and Sustainability of Chile's Prized Wild Edible Mushroom, Boletus loyo

    Hailey Blair, Science
    Feather Samples as a Source of DNA for Species Identification of Empidonax Flycatchers

    Benjamin Marconi, Social & Behavioral Sciences
    Refining Chronologies: Examining the Impact of Holocene Climate Change on Wetlands in Baja, Mexico

    Jermy Thomas, Engineering
    Pilot Study on how indoor environmental and physiological variables affect human thermal comfort

    Keaton Tremble, Science
    Impact of ectomycorrhizal fungal diversity on aspen gene regulation

  • Brooke Larsen ,Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    The Colorado Plateau as a Frontline for Climate Justice

    James Blevins, Anthropology
    Sustainable Intertidal Resource Use: Developing Modern Baselines to Explain Prehistoric Human Impacts

    Carly Hansen, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Monitoring Water Quality, Levels, and Bank Vegetation of the Jordan River using Low-Cost UAV

    Nicole Torosin, Anthropology
    Evaluating the selective pressure effects of Yellow Fever Virus on howler monkey immune genes.

    Jory Lerback, Geology & Geophysics
    Defining the interaction between faults and sprigs in Skull Valley, UT and how changes in spring hydrology will affect anthropogenic use

    Grant Rea-Downing, Geology & Geophysics
    Developing magnetic techniques to track air pollution on the University of Utah campus

    Joshua Heyer, Geography
    A paleoecological reconstruction from an oxbow lake on the Dolores River, Utah

    Austin Green, Biology
    Ecology and Conservation of the Central Wasatch Range Mammal Community Along an Urban-Wildland Interface

    Benjamin Breeden, Geology & Geophysics
    Contextualizing the Rise of Dinosaurs in North America: A Chemostratigraphic Investigation of the Triassic-Jurassic Boundary Interval in Northeastern Arizona

    Casey Clifford, Environmental Humanities Graduate Program
    Drowning in Air

    Dale Forrister, Biology
    Using Drones to Monitor Plant Phenology in Yasuni, Ecuador's hyper-diverse tropical forest

    Kenneth Vernon, Anthropology

    Keunhyun Park, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Not Parking Lots But Parks: The Impact of Urban Parks on Sustainable Travel Behavior in Station Areas

    Pratiti Tagore, City & Metropolitan Planning
    Decoding the Urban Neighborhood: Influences of social dynamics, built environment and natural environment on human perceptions and safety

    Sabrina McNew, Biology
    Identifying reservoirs of invasive parasites

  • Evan Kipnis, Geology and Geophysics
    Are changes to surface halite linked to shallow brine aquifer geochemistry at the Bonneville Salt Flats?

    Jordan Herman, Biology
    Breeding Birds and Climate Change: Can Nest Type Provide Shelter From the Storm?

    Sabrina McNew, Biology
    Does climate mediate the tolerance of Galapagos mockingbirds to invasive nest flies?

    Andrew Bartlow, Biology
    The Effect of Pinyon-Juniper Invasion on Parasite Communities in the Great Basin

    Ian Summers, Communication
    This land is your land? The role of social identity within land disputes

    Joshua Mueller, Geography
    Paleotempestology of the British Virgin Islands

    Kate Magargal, Anthropology
    People and Fire in Prehistory in the Upper Escalante Watershed, Utah

    Alexei Perelet, Mechanical Engineering
    Exploration of the microclimate over structured sparse canopies using area averaged measurements from large aperture scintillometry

    Joyita Roy Chowdhury, Economics
    Cooperation and Water Resource management: Experimental Evidence from villages affected by natural disasters in rural Odisha, India

    Maria Groves, Geography
    An Ecological and Climatic Reconstruction of Range Creek Canyon, Utah

    Casey Duncan, Geology and Geophysics
    Development and Deployment of a Low-Cost Multispectral Camera and UAV

    Leah Campbell, Atmospheric Sciences
    Mountain Effects on Precipitation in the Chilean Andes

  • Ralph Burrillo, Anthropology
    δ18O Variability in Water Sources and Plant Cellulose on Elk Ridge, Southeast Utah: Data Collection for Models of Environmental Adaptation on the Prehistoric Colorado Plateau

    Logan Frederick, Geology and Geophysics
    Assessing Sedimentary Records of the Quimsacocha Region of Ecuador for Potential Paleoclimate Analysis

    Tyler Huth, Geology and Geophysics
    High resolution soil CO2 and soil water isotope profiles from Torrey, Utah

    Cornelia Rasmussen, Geology and Geophysics
    Environmental effects of bolide impacts during the Late Triassic

    Joyita Roy Chowdhury, Economics
    Poverty Traps, Risk and Natural disasters: Micro evidence from rural Odisha, India

    Rose Verbos,  Parks, Recreation, and Tourism
    Weather and outdoor recreation: A weather dependency framework and an exploration of outdoor recreationists’ perceptions of weather dependency

    Amanda Bertana, Sociology
    Doctoral Dissertation Research: Environmentally Induced Migration

    Leah Campbell, Atmospheric Sciences
    Mountain Effects on Precipitation in the Chilean Andes

    Megan Moser,  Parks, Recreation and Tourism
    Understanding Potential Visitor Responses to the Possible Recession Of Exit Glacier At Kenai Fjords National Park

    Katherine Schide, Geology
    A Geomorphic Study of Transgressive Deposits and Local Climate Change in Late Pleistocene Lake Bonneville

    Nicole Torosin, Anthropology
    A comparative study of human and howler monkey Toll-Like Receptor 7 under the selective pressure of yellow fever virus

    Danielle Ward, Geography
    Laser Diffraction Analysis of Range Creek Canyon Sediments

    Chris Zajchowski,   Parks, Recreation and Tourism
    Valley flight: Normative standards for alpine recreation during air pollution events

  • Ralph Burrillo, Anthropology
    δ18O Variability in Water Sources on the Colorado Plateau: Preliminaries to Stable Isotope Models of Prehistoric Irrigation.

    Vanessa Chavez, Geography
    Ciénega Activity and Climate Responses for a Desert Wetland in Baja California.

    Mark Chynoweth, Biology
    Human-wildlife conflict in eastern Turkey: gaining perspective from community surveys

    Mohd Yusuf Jameel, Geology & Geophysics
    Deciphering the source of carbon in the anthropogenically modified rivers of the Great Salt Lake basin

    Patrice Kurnath, Biology
    Chill Out – Microclimate Use by Mammalian Herbivores Challenged with Temperature and Toxins

    Kate Magargal, Anthropology
    Fetching Firewood: Access to fuels as a constraint for prehistoric settlement

    Nathan Miller, Mechanical Engineering
    An Experimental Study of Block-scale Particle Dispersion in Grape Vineyards

    Emily Schulze, Biology
    Hidden Water Worlds of Red Butte Canyon

    Tracy Maezumi, Geography
    Neotropical Climate, Vegetation, and Fire Histories on Local and Regional Scales

    Tracy Maezumi, Geography
    Identifying the extent of Human Landscape Modification in the Bolivian Amazon

    Crystal Tulley-Cordova, Geology & Geophysics
    Recording the North American Monsoon in Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah

    Megan Walsh, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Using Remote Sensing, GIS, and Field-Collected Data to Determine Erosion and Sedimentation Effects of the Oil & Gas Industry in the Uinta Basin

    Kathryn White,  Parks, Recreation & Tourism
    Spatial Analysis of Rock Climbers in Indian Creek, Utah

  • Evan Buechley, Biology
    Conservation agriculture: A study of birds, ecosystem services, and the ecology of Ethiopian coffee farms

    Vachel Carter, Geography
    Forest Disturbance Regimes in the Uinta Mountains

    Kendra Chritz, Geology & Geophysics
    Uncovering isotopic indicators of monsoon-induced terrestrial ecosystem change in easternAfrica

    Youcan Feng, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Study of Stormwater Volume Captured and Evapotranspiration using a Small AutomatedLysimeter Constructed on the University of Utah Marriott Library Green Roof

    Mohd Yusuf Jameel, Geology & Geophysics
    Impact of Anthropogenic activities on the Carbon budget of the Great Salt Lake, Utah

    Michael Lewis, Anthropology
    Modeling Basketmaker II diets through stable isotope analysis of modern indigenous flora: field collection

    Zachary Magdol, Civil & Environmental Engineering
    Assessing the Environmental Impacts of Red Butte Garden

    Timothy Price, Mechanical Engineering
    Enhanced Atmospheric Turbulence Measurement System

    Gerald Schneider, Biology
    Assessing Trends in Anthropogenic Ozone within an Urban-influenced Tropical Forest andExamining the Effects of O3 on the Foliar Chemical Landscape

    Hilary Sgalitzer,  Parks, Recreation &Tourism
    Sustainability: Understanding Travelers’ Motivations to Donate to Conservation

    Paul Thomas, Geology & Geophysics
    Barrier Complexes in the Deep Creek Mountains, UT as G.K. Gilbert’s “Intermediate Shorelines” of Pleistocene Lake Bonneville

    Tracy Maezumi, Geography
    Neotropical Climate, Vegetation, and Fire Histories on Local to Regional Scales

    Crystal Tulley- Cordova, Geology & Geophysics
    High Frequency Monitoring of Stream Water Isotopes in Red Butte Creek

  • Sarah Knutie, Biology
    Predicting long-term effects of an invasive parasite: quantifying the observer effect

    Tracy Maezumi, Geography
    Neotropical Climate and Fire Histories on Local to Regional Scales

    Ann Bryant, Geography
    Reflectance characteristics of dust in snow: in situ data informing remote sensing retrievals

    Maria-Jose Endara, Biology
    Towards sustainable insect management in agroforestry: The relevance of host plant defensive traits and phylogeny in determining herbivore host choice in the speciose Neotropical tree genus, Inga

    Becky Hollingshaus, Geology & Geophysics
    Quantification of reservoir characteristics in areas of groundwater discharge – A Hydrolic Study in the Red Butte Canyon Research Natural Area

    Patrice Kurnath, Biology
    Turning up the heat:Investigating the effects of climate change on liver metabolism in herbivorous mammals

    David Lubbar, Mathematics
    Anistropic AC Measurements of Sea Ice

    Greg Maurer, Biology
    Sensitivity of soil carbon cycle processes to mountain snowpack variability

    Nathan Miller,  Mechanical Engineering
    An Experimental Study of Fungal Spore Dispersion in Grape Vineyards

    Erin Spear, Biology
    Phytopathogens as determinants of tree species distributions across a rainfall gradient

    Johanna Varner, Biology
    Too hot to trot? Factors promoting pika survival in a time of global change

    Jennifer Watt, Geography
    Bark beetle outbreaks and the role that vegetation plays in their disturbance ecology

    Brett Wolfe, Biology
    The determinants of drought response in tropical trees

    Carina Maron, Biology
    Do southern right whales need to eat krill in order to reproduce successfully?

Global Changes and Society Project-based Course

Offered in the spring, the project-based course “Global Changes and Society” (SUST 6000) offers an interdisciplinary introduction to research related to global changes and sustainability. In this course, students from different disciplines Identify a theme or focus area, begin to learn the language and approaches of other disciplines around the theme, explore perspectives and approaches of different stakeholders, and develop a team project.

Read about the projects from each class.

Environment and Sustainability Research Symposium

Held every spring, the symposium provides a great opportunity for students from across campus to synthesize and present their research in a poster session. Presenters from past years are listed here.

Air Quality Scholars

The Air Quality Scholars program, sponsored by the Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, the Sustainability Office, and the Global Change and Sustainability Center, provides scholarships, training, and engagement opportunities to U of U undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in understanding and improving air quality.


The GCSC also engages in partnerships that provide undergraduate students with training and mentoring that will help prepare them to address the complex challenges of sustainability and the environment, working in interdisciplinary teams, where data sharing, collaboration, and communication are essential.