student picture Jackie Branyon - Civil and Coastal Engineering

Jackie Branyon received her B.S. degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Florida. Upon graduation, Jackie became a Civil Engineering Officer for the Florida Air National Guard, where she served as a first responder for natural disasters in the state. During that time, she enrolled in the Water Resources Engineering program at UF where she earned her M.S. While getting her Masterís degree, Jackie worked at Ocean Engineering Associates as an engineer-in-training, performing hydraulic analyses through 3D modeling. Jackie earned her Ph.D. in Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering in December 2015, working with Dr. Arnoldo Valle-Levinson. Her contributions to the WIGF program encompassed sea-level rise, saltwater intrusion, and availability of future freshwater resources. Her doctoral studies focus on the influence of circulation, tides, waves, and sea-level rise on submarine groundwater discharge from springs in a shallow fringing reef lagoon system. Jackie is currently employed by Mofatt & Nichol, an international engineering consulting firm, in California.
student picture Peter Chutcharavan - Geological Sciences

A native of Portage, Michigan, Peter Chutcharavan earned his B.S. in Geological Sciences at the University of Michigan before heading to Florida to pursue a Ph.D. with Dr. Andrea Dutton, researching past sea-level change. Peterís research interests are paleoceanography, isotope geochemistry, geochronology and carbonate sedimentology. Peterís current work with the WIGF program involves studying speleothems from the Yucatan Peninsula to better constrain maximum sea-level change in the region. He is also compiling U/Th coral dates from existing literature to model uranium isotope variability in the oceans over the last 500 kyr. His doctoral dissertation research involves development and analysis of a database of coral U-Th measurements to constrain past sea level variability.
student picture Yujun Deng - Urban & Regional Planning Department

Yujun Deng received his B.S. degree from Nanjing University of Technology, and received his M.S. degree from the University of Florida. Yujun is a Ph.D. student in the Urban & Regional Planning Department working with Dr. Zhong-Ren Peng. Prior to joining the WIGF program, Yujun studied the effect of sea-level rise on current building codes. His research interests include integrated impacts of human activities and rising sea-level on coastal water resources, adaptation planning in vulnerable areas, and effects of sea-level rise on infrastructure such as transportation. Yujunís doctoral research focuses on adaption planning, specifically cost-benefit analysis of strategies used to protect the coastal properties.
student picture Katie Glodzik - School of Natural Resources and Environment

Katie Glodzik is studying saltwater intrusion in salt marsh and coastal forest along Florida's Big Bend, focusing on impacts to groundwater salinity, vegetation, and ecosystem structure. Her work attempts to distinguish between impacts from sea-level rise and from altered freshwater influence at the coast. Katie is also examining how roads impact salt marsh salinity and vegetation by interrupting tidal flow. She earned her Master of Environmental Management (2013) from Duke University, with coursework in wetland ecology, geospatial and multivariate analysis, and biogeochemistry. For her Masterís thesis she employed a soil-core experiment to study saltwater intrusion impacts to wetland sediment biogeochemistry. Katie has prior consulting experience in sea-level rise analysis and natural-resource damage assessment. Katieís doctoral dissertation research, working with Dr. David Kaplan, addresses saltwater intrusion impacts to salt marsh vegetation and coastal forest along the Big Bend of Florida.
student picture Laibin Huang - Soil and Water Science

Laibin earned his B.S. from University of Science and Technology Ė Beijing and his M.S. from Beijing Normal University. Laibinís research interests include response of microbial communities in subterranean estuaries to inundation by saline seawater following sea-level rise; effects of changes in microbial communities on nutrient and metal species in surface estuaries; how changes in microbial function and physicochemical conditions of subterranean estuaries alter chemical composition of coastal aquifers, thereby affecting water quality of surface estuaries, groundwater resources, and cost of utilizing these resources; and resilience of microbial community structure and function at the changing saline/freshwater interface. Laibinís doctoral dissertation research, working with Dr. Andy Ogram, investigates effects of sea-level change on microbially mediated nitrogen cycling in subterranean estuaries
student picture Andrea Pain - Geological Sciences

Andrea Pain earned her undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University and her Masters from ETH Zurich. Andreaís undergraduate and graduate research focused on nutrient cycling in coastal marine environments as well as in agricultural soils. Her general research interests are related to sustainability in water and nutrient cycles in the face of climate change and sea-level rise. Andrea is interested in biogeochemical implications of sea-level rise and saltwater intrusion on coastal aquifers, and exploring the consequences for water supply, coastal nutrient cycling, and coastal ecosystems. Andreaís doctoral dissertation research, working with Dr. Jonathan Martin, is examining effects of sea-level rise on carbon and phosphorus cycling in subterranean estuaries: feedbacks and mineralogical controls.
student picture Alexandra Skrivanek - Geological Sciences

Alexandra Skrivanek received a B.S. in Earth and Environmental Sciences, with Minors in Oceanography and Museum Studies, from University of Michigan. Lexaís doctoral dissertation research, working with Dr. Andrea Dutton, involved inferences of glacial-interglacial sea level variability from circum-Caribbean Last Interglacial coral reefs. Her research explores sea-level change during past warm periods of earth's history in order to better understand sea-level and ice-sheet response to rapid global warming. At field sites in the Mexican YucatŠn and Jamaica, Lexa is measuring age and elevation of fossil coral reefs from the circum-Caribbean region to assess timing and rate of sea-level rise during the Last Interglacial period, ~ 125,000 years ago, and test the hypothesis that sea level rapidly oscillated during this time. Lexa is investigating patterns of chemical alteration of Caribbean, Last-Interglacial fossil corals to obtain more accurate and precise ages, and to determine the best coral species for geochemical analyses and dating.
student picture Karen Vyverberg - Geological Sciences

Karen Vyverberg received her B.S. from University of Florida, and her research interests are using geochemistry to study paleoclimate, then using that paleoclimate information to understand the climate change the Earth is currently experiencing. Karenís doctoral dissertation research, working with Dr. Andrea Dutton, involves reconstructing the temporal evolution of global sea level during the last interglacial period (~125,000 years ago). Karen is studying fossil coral reefs in the Seychelles and Florida Keys, where geochronology and paleo-shoreline GPS elevation measurements of fossil corals yield a relative sea level that can be used to determine overall global sea level during the Last Interglacial. Karenís goal is to better constrain the timing and elevation of the global sea-level high stand during this time, and to determine if and when a sea-level oscillation occurred.