About Me

I was born in the early 1990’s in Shoreline Connecticut, USA. As a child I often visited the Atlantic coastline along Long Island Sound, and developed a deep love for the ocean and the many creatures that inhabit marine coastal regions. As a young teenager I moved 1,000 km inland to Ohio, far from the ocean, but I never forgot my love of the coast. As a result, I decided to pursue an undergraduate degree in Geological Sciences at Ohio University, with the intention of later pursuing a graduate degree in Oceanography or Marine Geology.

2014 Outcrop
Collecting Ordovician Bivalves, Maysville, KY (Spring 2014)

While at Ohio U., I became involved in the Ordovician Atlas project through the laboratory of Dr. Alycia Stigall. In my final year of undergraduate education, I began a senior honors thesis with Dr. Stigall, focusing on assessing taphonomy of Upper Ordovician (450 million year old) bivalves (clams) in the fossil record of Northern Kentucky. This project introduced me to molluscan communities and their function as a bellwether for climate change. During this time I was introduced to Dr. Yurena Yanes, a Canary Island native whose research focused on molluscan assemblages in coastal and island ecosystems. When Dr. Yanes offered me a position in her laboratory as an MS student, I immediately accepted, and moved to the University of Cincinnati (UC) to continue my education.

Collecting Patella candei shells from Tenerife, Canary Islands, 2016

I matriculated in 2015 as an MS student in Geology, with an estimated graduation in 2017. My original thesis topic centered around calibrating the oxygen isotope composition of two gastropod species for usage as paleoclimate archives in the Canary Islands. However, I grew to love my project and research so much that Dr. Yanes and I
developed multiple additional projects, expanding the topic to include analysis of holocene rapid climate events and aboriginal Canary Islander responses to these pressures. In 2017 I was offered the opportunity to transfer into the PhD program in Geology at UC.

I successfully defended my candidacy in April, 2018, and am on-track to graduate with my PhD in 2020.

My research and manuscript writing presently takes up the majority of my time, but when I am ‘off the clock’ I enjoy watching superhero action movies, reading science fiction novels, attending theatrical productions (particularly musicals), and spending time with my partner and our geriatric beagle, Sarah.

The Yanes Lab conducting fieldwork on Fuerteventura Island, Canary Islands (2017). [From left to right: Wesley Parker, Abbey Padgett, Dr. Yurena Yanes, Evan New]