Meet UVM Geology Graduate Students

UVM Geology Graduate Student Research

Alison Denn: I am a first year graduate student working under Paul Bierman, and I will be using cosmogenic nuclides to investigate sediment transport at the Shale Hills Critical Zone Observatory, PA. I graduated from Vassar College ’12 with a degree in Earth Science. After graduation, I moved to MA where I worked as an organic farmer, construction worker, and personal trainer. I am excited to return to academia; this is a lovely department in an incredible location. When I’m not in class or in the lab you can find me cooking up fresh produce, training with kettlebells, and exploring the area.

Alyson Hampsch : I grew up in Massachusetts and graduated from Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania with a B.S. degree in Environmental Studies. I'm happy to be coming back north to UVM and I'm currently working with Julia Perdrial, looking at carbon distribution and dynamics in Vermont floodplains.

Braden Rosenberg: Hello, folks! I am excited to be working on my M.S. in Geology at UVM. After graduating from Middlebury College in 2011, my wife and I moved to Jackson, WY where we have been living for the past 2 years. We are both very excited to be back in Vermont, where my wife grew up and I spent a lot of time while growing up in the Adirondacks. At UVM I will be working with Andrew Schroth to investigate phosphorous loading into Mississquoi Bay in Lake Champlain and the subsequent algae blooms. The project will look at geochemical and sediment data in both Lake Champlain and the Gulf of Alaska in an attempt to gain better understanding of the mobilization of phosphorous. Even though the mountains are smaller here than in Wyoming, I’m excited to be back in my old stomping ground and hope to get in some quality time mountain biking and skiing.

Cheyne Aiken: Hey hey! I am originally from Connecticut, but I have lived in Florida, South Carolina, Michigan, Virginia, and New York. I'm a first year graduate student working with Laura Webb on a structural geology project. I graduated from SUNY Potsdam in May of 2014, where I was able to intern at a mine in Alaska and volunteer at a zoo in Belize! I spent the summer of 2013 interning and the summer of 2014 working full time as an exploration geologist for a mining company in Southeast Alaska. I enjoy snowboarding in the winter, and hiking, climbing, and slack-lining during the summer. I am really looking forward to learning about geology in an area I have yet to work! As they say, the best geologist is the one that has seen the most rocks!

Evan Tam: Hey there! I'm thrilled to be here at UVM working on my Masters! I grew up in Massachusetts, and did my undergraduate B.S degree in Environmental Science at UConn. I will be studying geochronology and structure under Laura Webb. I've done bits of geology research on active tectonics and structural geology in Japan, Taiwan, and Connecticut, and I've also worked for the Connecticut State Geologist on the State Mines and Quarries Inventory. I'm looking forward to getting to know Vermont and its geology much better, and spending time exploring the area! See you around!

Gina Accorsi: I am a graduate student working with profesor of Mineralogy, John Hughes on a project involving “Conflict Minerals” and "Mineral Fingerprinting". By looking at a mineral’s elemental signature,amongmany other defining, unique characteristics, we hope to trace minerals back to their place of origin, and apply this to rare earth element bearing minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo. I grew up in Springfield Massachusetts, and received my Bachelors in geology from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst in 2013. I could not be happier to have ended up at UVM for my Master's Degree, and am looking forward to every moment of it!

Hannah Blatchford: Hi all, I am a first year graduate student raised in Maine. I graduated with a B.S. in geology from Beloit College in 2012, and have spent the last two years working for the USGS in Boise, Idaho and for an oilfield service company in northern Colorado. I am happy to be back in school here in Vermont and to be starting my research with Professor Keith Klepeis, working to understand aspects of the deformational history of lower crustal rocks exposed in the Fiordland region of New Zealand. Outside of school, you can find me practicing trials unicyling and nordic skiing.

Jennifer Bower: I'm originally from St. Louis, but I spent the past six years studying in Ohio at Oberlin College, where I earned undergraduate degrees in Geology and Organ Performance, as well as a masters degree in Historical Performance. In my free time (what free time?), I like to play the harpsichord and organ, and also enjoy cooking, reading, and watching terrible TV. This is my first year of the masters program, and I'm working with Nico Perdrial to learn more about the effects of weathering on Pb speciation in urban environments. I'm fascinated by the biogeochemical behavior of metals, and can't wait to learn more about urban geochemistry and environmental remediation. I'm looking forward to my time here!

John Gilbert: Hi there. I grew up in Connecticut, and have since called various places- including Washington DC, Boston and Amherst, MA, Wyoming and the Pacific Northwest- my home. I worked in mineral exploration in the U.S. and Canada before getting a B.S. from UMass Amherst, where I worked for the State Geological Survey there. I'm currently working with Prof. Keith Klepeis exploring the structural history and tectonics of the lower crust in Fiordland, southwest New Zealand. Like most everyone else in the Geo department, I like getting outside in Vermont and enjoying all kinds of fun throughout the seasons!

Matthew Kraft: I grew up in rural Western New York and graduated from SUNY Buffalo State with dual degrees in Environmental Earth Science and Geology as well as minors in Biology and Geographic Information Systems. During my undergraduate career I was fortunate to be involved in a variety of research projects. During the summer of 2013 I worked for Middlebury College as a research assistant studying sediment transport dynamics of Missisquoi Bay, USA and Canada. From 2014-2015 I was involved in a research project investigating hydrodynamics of the Buffalo River in New York. My research interest include paleolimnolgy and paleoclimatology. I couldn't be more grateful to be back in Vermont earning my Masters degree at UVM!

Michael (Mike) Ingram: Hi, My name is Mike Ingram and I am a second year graduate student studying under Keith Klepeis. My project, which is based in New Zealand and focused on deformation in the lower crust, is in full swing. I have been using in-house software to calculate the 3D shape of deformed minerals. By conducting this type of analysis across 10's of kilometers I have been able to define new strain gradients and shear zones. I recently attended Northeast GSA at Mt. Washington and had a wonderful time. Regards, Mike

Samuel (Sam) Lagor: Hey now! I'm a first year graduate student working on a geochronologic and structural study with Laura Webb on the metamorphic effects of syn-tectonic granitic intrusions on Devonian metasediments during the Acadian Orogeny. I am from Matunuck, Rhode Island, and grew up as a ?fac brat? at the Hill School, a prep school outside of Philadelphia. I graduated from St. Lawrence University in 2013, with a B.Sc. in Geology and a minor in French, where I was able to participate in semester abroad experiences at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand and l'Université de Savoie in Chambéry, France in the fall and spring of my junior year, respectively. On that note, I enjoy traveling immensely, and have loved my geologic pursuits thus far for one, because there are rocks everywhere!? Outside of the lab and field sites, you can find me hiking in the Green Mountains and Adirondacks, riding boards through all seasons, telling pirate jokes, and making/listening to live music. Psyched that there is plenty of all that here around Burlington, and would you look at that? There are rocks here too!

Sophie Greene: I grew up in New Jersey and attended Carleton College in MN. Although I got my BA in chemistry, my near-constant presence in the geology department allowed me to join the longstanding club of honorary geo majors. During my undergraduate years I worked as a research assistant in chemistry and geochemistry labs in Colorado, South Carolina, and New Jersey, along with studying abroad with Carleton's geology department in New Zealand. My research interests include using geochemical tools for understanding the relationships between climate variability, isotope systems, and landscape change, although I'm also interested in science outreach and education. At UVM I will be working with Paul Bierman in the cosmogenic nuclide lab.

Thomas Neilson: I grew up in Maine, and attended Colorado College as an undergraduate majoring in geology. After graduating in 2010 I took a year to travel and pursue whitewater kayaking on rivers across the country and throughout the world, before moving to Portland, Oregon to teaching whitewater kayaking. During this time I also worked as an Assistant Scientist teaching oceanographic science, sampling techniques and seamanship aboard sailing research vessels for an undergraduate study abroad program called SEA. My research interests include marine geology and oceanographic sciences and landscape evolution and river systems.

Ph.D Candidates in Rubenstein School of Natural Resources working with Major professor: Paul Bierman (Geology)

Ashley (Lee) Corbett: I am a PhD student in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources working with Paul Bierman in the cosmogenic nuclide laboratory. I completed my BA degree in Geology at Middlebury College in 2007 and my MS degree in Geology at University of Vermont in 2011. I grew up in Vermont and have had a hard time leaving this wonderful state! Broadly speaking, I am interested in how high-latitude landscapes evolve over space and time. I am particularly interested in glaciers and ice sheets, how they move sediments across Earth's surface, and how the efficiency of subglacial erosion controls landscape development. I have conducted five seasons of fieldwork in Greenland and hope to continue going back. Visit me at my personal and UVM webpages.

Veronica Sosa-Gonzalez: I grew up in Puerto Rico, where I got my B.S. in Environmental Sciences at the University of Puerto Rico. I came to the University of Vermont in 2010 to work on my M.S. in Natural Resources at the Rubenstein School. My M.S. thesis was on the determination of long-term erosion rates in Panama using 10Be, under the advice of Dr. Paul Bierman. I started my PhD in the Fall of 2012, working in a project to understand the connections between land management, soil erosion and sediment yield in large river basins. Field work will take place in Western China.