Meghan Avolio earned her PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Yale University and is a plant ecologist studying the mechanisms by which global change drivers, including urbanization, impact the diversity of plant populations and communities. Her research addresses the consequences of global change for individual plants up to entire ecosystem functioning. Meghan has joined us from the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, where she previously held a prestigious postdoctoral fellowship.
Maya Gomes earned her PhD in Earth and Planetary Sciences from Northwestern University, and her primary research interest is the use of sulfur isotope and other geochemical records to reconstruct the coupled biogeochemical cycling of sulfur, carbon and oxygen during the early evolution of life on Earth and climate perturbations in the Phanerozoic. She studies modern lakes as natural experimental systems to explore the preservation of sulfur isotope and other geochemical signals and apply the results to the geological record. Maya is joined our department from her PhD at Northwestern and a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellowship at Harvard.
June Wicks (PhD in geochemistry from California Institute of Technology) explores the properties of the building blocks of terrestrial planets both within and outside our solar system. She performs measurements of materials at high pressure, either in diamond anvil cells or under dynamic compression, for example using X-ray lasers at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. Her measurements push the frontiers of material science to extreme high pressure and short timescale.
Emmy Smith (PhD in Earth and Planetary Sciences from Harvard University) is a field geologist trained at Amherst and Harvard, and was a postdoc at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. She works on Late Proterozoic and Cambrian geology, sedimentology, paleontology, tectonics, and geochemistry, with a broad interest in the coevolution of life and the environment at major transitions in Earth history. Emmy performs field work in Mongolia, southwest USA, and southern Africa. She is establishing an stable isotope mass spectrometry facility with Dr. Maya Gomes, and a mineral separation facility with Dr. Daniel Viete in Olin Hall.