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2012- 2013 Fellows

Cohorts Funded by the National Science Foundation


Carlos Zayas Santiago
University of Puerto Rico
Mentor: Dr. William Gilly,
Stanford University
I am a Coastal Marine Biology major at University of Puerto Rico at Humacao. I was born and raised in Puerto Rico, as part of my undergraduate career I have been able to travel and experience research in ecology. As a member of SEEDS I have participated in travel awards and chapter activities, some of my interests include: Ecology, Kayaking, Swimming, Hiking, any outdoor activity and agriculture.

Project Title: “A Comparison of functional anatomy in squid and local hydrographic and biological pressures from two different habitats– Hawaii Sthenoteuthis oualaniensis and Monterey Bay Doryteuthis opalescens”.

Dayani Pieri
Northeastern University
Mentor: Dr. R. Michael Miller, Argonne National Laboratory 
Nature captured my heart at a young age. I grew up playing with soil, climbing trees and running through rice paddy fields in the beautiful island of Sri Lanka. The mountains around me brought me serenity and the rock collections fascinated me. In my adult life, SEEDS opened new doors for me and reunited me with nature. SEEDS granted me many amazing experiences that I never dreamed of ever realizing. Today, as I educate young children surrounded by concrete, I sigh in griefL. My goal is to unite them also with nature. Currently, I am passionate about research. My research experiences have included; invasive plant species, soil ecology and microbial fungi. I am currently conducting research funded by SEEDS at the Argonne National Laboratory; examining the relationship between bio fuel feedstock productivity and arbuscular micorrhizal fungi.

Project Title: “The effects of perennial grasses grown in interspecific and intraspecific combinations on the growth of their arbuscular mycorrhizal symbionts.”

Tiffany Carey
University of Michigan
Mentor: Dr. Kristina Stinson, Harvard University

As a resident and environmental steward in an underprivileged city, Detroit, Michigan, I continuously face environmental dilemmas that surround my community. I have witnessed and experienced the affects of illegal dumping, pollution, industrial facilities and other non-environmentally friendly acts.  My specialization during my undergraduate career has been Environmental Policy/Law and Envrionmental Justice. With this degree and focus I plan to pursue a JD in Envrionmental Law or continue my studies to obtain a PhD in Aerobiology/Epideomology. The main driver for my interest in aerobiology sprouted from my four year research focusing on Pollen and Public Health in the urban context, specifically Detroit Michigan. As I continue to develop my skills and expand my interests, I remain steadfast in believing that my current concerns and enthusiasm about ecology will one day leverage change in not just Detroit, but communities all over. I’ve been able to accomplish many of my dreams and goals during my college years, and I’m honored and blessed to make a positive impact on UM’s Campus, Detroit and nationwide.

Project Title: “Developing estimators of  ragweed pollen production from measurements of inflorescence size”.

Vincent Waquiu
New Mexico State University
Mentor: Dr. David Orwig, Harvard University
Vincent majors in Wildlife Science at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces , New Mexico.  Vincent is degree neutral, his interests include Geospatial Information Technologies, Range Management, Ecology, Forestry, and Geology. He plans to work with his tribe either at Laguna or Jemez Pueblo when he accomplishes his degree. For his fellowship research Vincent will travel to Harvard Forest in Massachusetts to study the effects of invasive insects on eastern hemlock a native coniferous tree to eastern North America.

Project Title: “The impact of co-occurring invasive insects on eastern hemlock health and chemistry.”