Alumni Updates| May 15, 2009
DAN FISHER '72. I am a senior research scientist at the University of Maryland's College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and also lecture as an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Science and Technology in this same college. My official research location is at the Wye Research and Education Center on Maryland's Eastern Shore. I am an environmental/ecological toxicologist studying endocrine disruption, antibiotics, and antibiotic resistant bacteria in aquatic systems. In addition, I am working on invasive species control issues in ship ballast water.
CAREY WHITEHEAD '00 will complete her J.D. with a certificate in Environmental and Natural Resource Law from Lewis and Clark Law School in May 2009. Next fall, she will serve as an honors attorney in the Washington, D.C., headquarters of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.
MARISA GUARINELLO '02. I completed my M.S. in oceanography at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography. I now work as a research assistant at UMCESChesapeake Biological Laboratory. I work in an Arctic oceanography lab that primarily studies the Bering and Chuchki Sea ecosystems and how they change with sea ice extent. I recently spent 3.5 weeks on a USCG icebreaker in the Bering Sea.
KRISTEN MURPHY '02. Kristin is employed as an environmental biologist for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, D.C., conducting assessments for hydropower projects throughout the U.S. She is also a part-time student at Johns Hopkins University, working towards an M.S. in environmental science and policy, with an ecological management concentration.
ELIZABETH KETCHUM VONHOF '03. I have been living in the UK for the past year and a half, while my husband Marco (another W&M grad) pursues an M.Phil. in Russian studies at Oxford University. I am working as a recycling policy and communications officer for Oxford City Council. This involves both communicating the city's recycling program to residents and students, and developing strategy to improve the program in the future (including introducing a food waste collection).
MELLISA PENSA '04. Mellisa graduated from University of Connecticut Medical School in May of 2008. She is currently a family medicine/ preventative medicine resident at Oregon Health and Sciences University in Portland, Ore. She is completing her M.P.H. during residency and plans to incorporate epidemiological research and health policy into her medical career. Mellisa will be married in June of 2009 to Jonathan Sharr, of Portland.
OWEN MCDONOUGH '05. I passed my Ph.D. comprehensive exams at the University of Maryland in the BEES (Behavior—Ecology— Evolution— Systematics) program in December '08 (same program as Jason Keagy, '03 and Judy Che '04). My research project focuses on the hydrological and ecological connections between wetland and stream ecosystems.
EMILY THOMPSON '06. I graduated from Stony Brook in August with a master's in ecology and evolution. I've found that my true desire lies in teaching so this summer I will either be starting secondary teaching certification in integrated science at Michigan State University or a master's in science education (curriculum design) with certification at University of Michigan.
ERIN FENLON '07. Erin has started working on her geology master's degree at the University of Wisconsin. She has enjoyed exploring Madison, especially the outstanding farmers market. This summer, Erin is excited to be kayak guiding again in beautiful Door County.
HEATHER HEISER '07. I'm living in Mishawaka, Ind. and working for the Lebermuth Company as a lab technician/ chemist/quality control personnel. We deal with extracting essential oils, fragrances, and flavors.
ELIZABETH MOORE '07. I'm currently writing from the Peace Corps office in Garoua, Cameroon. I got here in September and am an agroforestry volunteer in the north of Cameroon, working with tree planting for soil fertility, erosion control, reforestation, medicinal plants and orchards. A little rainwater catchment and beekeeping work on the side. It's fantastic, I love it, and I'm here until December 2010, at least. Before arriving here I was working for the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission in Corolla, N.C. as a wildilfe educator. I was there for about eight months. Great job, cool place.
ERIN MORGAN '07. This past August I began a master's program at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, the University of Oregon's marine lab on the state's southwestern coast. I'm developing a thesis project focused on the morphological response of eelgrass (Zostera marina) to disturbance, and potential edge effects. I am also teaching elementary school marine science classes as part of the NSF GK-12 program.
KATE PRENGAMAN '07. Kate is living in Nevada, spending the winter working for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas as a field botanist, and the summers working as a botanist and living in the backcountry of northern Nevada's mountains. She's planning to head back to school for a master's in science journalism in the near ish future, but right now, she's enjoying wandering the wilderness of the southwest, learning to rock climb, and looking to marry a geologist (so he can explain all of the cool desert rock formations to her...).
GORDON STILLMAN '07. Over the past year, I began to photograph sustainable farming practices in Virginia. The project combines my current profession with my major. The photographs and stories will be posted on vasustainableagriculture.wordpress.com, printed in a book and displayed in Richmond with other locations to follow.
SHELBI WILSON '07. I'm currently working in Norfolk, Va. for Booz Allen Hamilton to help develop and refine Air Force environmental programs. I have learned so much more about federal policy and regulations and environmental limitations for the military since I started here last January. I was also recently certified to audit environmental, safety, and occupational health management systems and will be traveling to complete audits this summer for the Air Force. On a personal note, I got married on March 28 to Jason Mackenzie (did not attend W&M) in Virginia Beach, Va.
MARLEY BICE '08. Right after graduation I moved to Norfolk and worked as a marketing assistant at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) for six months. Then on January 12 I started an 11-month AmeriCorps internship here in Charleston, Ore. I am serving as Watershed Outreach Organizer for the Coos Watershed Association. You can see a lot of my work and subscribe to my e-newsletter on our website: www.cooswatershed.org.
LEWIS BLAKE '08. I served as a research assistant in Denali National Park, AK, to researchers investigating invertebrate composition in proglacial streams and upwellings, and then joined the Student Conservation Association for a resource management internship at Fredericksburg National Park. I am currently working on a developing permaculture farm near Harrisonburg, Va.
JULIA ELKIN '08. After graduation, I interned with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation on their oyster restoration and aquaculture project out of Gloucester, Va. It led to a full-time job in their education department on the Maryland Canoe Rig, exploring the Bay's waterways and enjoying helping students connect with the outdoors.
SAMANTHA WESTON '08. Since graduating in May, I have been a student at the Benjamin N. Cardozo Scool of Law in New York. This summer I will be a legal intern at the New York Department of Environmental Conservation.
STEFANIE ZAENKER '08. I am currently living in Washington, D.C., and working as a full-time intern for OCEANA, an ocean conservation NGO. I work in the communications department, writing and editing press releases and pitching stories to national environmental reporters and journalists. Lately, our most pressing campaigns include the climate and energy campaign to urge the 111th congress to reinstate the moratorium on offshore oil drilling, and an aggressive campaign to urge the last four mercury-using chlorine plants to switch over to mercury-free technology. OCEANA's website is www.oceana.org.