December 7, 2016

Current Students

Rob Anderson, Western Resource Fellow | Rob Anderson, Western Resource Fellow | Rob is a Master of Environmental Science candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. His thesis research combines simulation modeling and field research to assess the potential of climate change to alter the plant community phenology of Southwest Wyoming through shifts in functional type. He is interested in incorporating species interactions and climatic changes to conservation decision-making. Prior to coming to YSE, Rob contributed to the protection of shorebirds with Mass Audubon, and then came to the EEB department at Yale to work on a global biodiversity mapping project. He received his B.S. in Environmental Science from Northeastern University. See what Rob has been up to.  |  Blog

Ross Martin, Western Resource Fellow | Ross is a Masters of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. His focus is on wildlife coexistence, ecosystem connectivity, environmental sociology, and the repopulation of bison in North America. Prior to graduate school, he worked in public policy, decarbonization campaigns, grassroots activism, and the conservation of wildlife in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. As a Western Resource Fellow, Ross will work with Tanka Fund, a South Dakota nonprofit returning bison to native lands, lives and economies in the American West. See what Ross has been up to.  |  Blog

Raffa Sindoni, Western Resource Fellow | Raffaele (“Raffa”) is a Master of Environmental (MEM) candidate at YSE, focusing on sociology, ecosystem management, and environmental justice. He is interested in the ways regenerative agriculture and ecosystem restoration support environmental and sociological healing in the wake of centuries of exploitation, oppression, and extraction. Raffa is also a Yale Environmental Justice Fellow and a research assistant in Dr. Justin Farrell’s lab on Western Land & Peoples, where he supports Tribal data-empowerment and researches Indigenous involvement in carbon-offsetting markets. Prior to Yale, Raffa worked as an economic consultant and data scientist, where he advised organizations like the DOJ, the ACLU, and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights. See what Raffa has been up to.  |  Blog

Rachel Renne, Western Resource Fellow | Rachel grew up in rural southwest Florida, in the heart of orange and cattle-country. After graduating from New College of Florida in 2008, she began a three-mile-per-hour tour—on foot—of the subtle and dramatic shifts of vegetation across the American landscape, hiking over 11,000 miles on National Scenic (and other) Trails. Rachel completed a Masters of Environmental Science at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies in 2018 and is now a doctoral student at the Yale School of the Environment. She is fascinated by how soils translate climate into vegetation in drylands, and her favorite drylands are big sagebrush ecosystems. She is interested in combining traditional field data with artificial intelligence to answer fundamental and applied questions about plant community ecology. See what Rachel has been up to.  |  Blog

Mara MacDonell, Research Assistant and Western Resource Fellow | Mara MacDonell is a Masters of Environmental Science student interested in rural communities, science communication, transitioning economies, and environmental justice in the American West. While she grew up in rural, remote northern Minnesota, she fell in love with the West while working in social services policy and programming in Telluride, CO. She has also coached Nordic skiing, served as an AmeriCorps VISTA, and guided backcountry canoe and backpacking trips. She holds a BA in geology from Carleton College. In her free time, Mara enjoys backcountry skiing, running rivers, rock climbing, and painting. See what Mara has been up to.  |  Blog

Delaney Heileman, Western Resource Fellow | Delaney is a Master of Environmental Science student at the Yale School of the Environment focused on energy justice in the American Southwest. Specifically, she is interested in energy access in Native American communities and is working with the Hopi Utility Corporation to understand issues of electrification and access. Her childhood in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she saw firsthand the inequities in the southwest, inspires her research. She holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering from the University of New Mexico. See what Delaney has been up to.  |  Blog

Annie Miller, Research Assistant | Annie Miller is a Masters of Environmental Management candidate at Yale School of the Environment. She focuses on biodiversity and land conservation in the West with a particular lens toward community-based conservation as a means to sustainably and justly address climate change. Prior to Yale, Annie worked in the citizen/community science field where she researched learning outcomes of youth and built partnerships with community-based organizations in the Bay Area. She received her B.S. in Biology and Environmental Science from Tufts University. See what Annie has been up to.  |  Blog

Christina Kohler, Research Assistant | Christina is a Master of Environmental Management Candidate at the Yale School of the Environment studying environmental policy and collaborative solutions to protect wildlife. Before coming to YSE, she worked for an environmental nonprofit, focusing on water and nutrient management on the Central Coast of California and stopping the sale of invasive horticultural plants. She also studied visitor use impacts while thru-hiking the Pacific Crest Trail and enjoys combining her two passions of research and backpacking. Christina holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Molecular Environmental Biology and Environmental Economics & Policy from the University of California, Berkeley. See what Christina has been up to.  |  Blog

Cloe Dickson, Western Resource Fellow|Cloe is a Master of Environmental Science candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. She earned her BA in Environmental Studies and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado Boulder in 2019. She is broadly interested in water politics of the North American Southwest, with a specific focus on rural-to-urban water transport throughout the region. As a Western Resources Fellow, her independently-led research looks at the ongoing efforts to keep water on working lands in rural Colorado’s San Luis Valley, which will consist of interviews with farmers, ranchers, and community members who have been fighting against water export to the urban and suburban Front Range for decades. Prior to graduate school, she served in AmeriCorps as a Youth Development Coordinator at Alpine Achievers Initiative, where she supported students in southern Colorado schools. In her free time, you can find her somewhere outside, ideally bagging another 4,000-foot peak in New England, where she grew up. Blog

Darya Watnick, Western Resources Fellow| Darya Watnick is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment, focusing on agriculture & food systems. She is particularly interested in regenerative agriculture practices and soil health. Her passion for food and agriculture began during her childhood in Southern California, growing up near avocado and citrus orchards and many strawberry fields. She holds a BA in Environmental Studies from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR. See what Darya has been up to.  |   Blog | Website

Kyle Lemle, Western Resource Fellow |Kyle Lemle is a Masters in Forestry candidate at the Yale School of Environment, focusing on how conservation, restoration and sustainable management of forest ecosystems can help achieve US state and national climate mitigation targets. As a Kerry Fellow, Kyle, supports Special Presidential Envoy on Climate John Kerry on climate and ecosystems policy analysis. Kyle is also a Wyss Scholar and YSE Climate Fellow, serving as a consultant for the US Climate Alliance and The Nature Conservancy North America Natural Climate Solutions division. Prior to matriculating at Yale, Kyle spent ten years leading forest conservation and climate advocacy movements in California and across the world.  See what Kyle has been up to.  |  Blog

Lani Chang, Research Assistant|Lani Chang is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment focusing on water and public land issues in the American West. In particular, she interested in understanding how to better integrate stakeholder engagement, local/indigenous knowledge, and creative science communication to achieve more equitable and sustainable outcomes. Having grown up in California and attended Colorado College for her BA, her interests have been heavily influenced through her time living, working, and recreating all over the West. See what Lani has been up to.  |  Blog

Laura González Mantecón, Research Assistant| Laura González Mantecón is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. She is interested in the intersection of ecosystem conservation and rural development and in the incorporation of traditional knowledge and community-led planning into management practices as part of the broader goal of addressing climate change and environmental inequities. Before coming to YSE, Laura worked in outdoor and international education, and she became enamored by the Western landscapes while living and skiing in the Canadian Rockies. See what Laura has been up to.  |  Blog

Lily Colburn,  Western Resource Fellow | Lily Colburn is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment studying nature-based solutions, conservation, and food systems. Prior to Yale, Lily worked at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama, studying the effects of reduced rainfall on root morphology and nutrient cycling. She has also spent time guiding backcountry trips in the Sierra Nevada. Lily holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in geography and English literature from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).  See what Lily has been up to. | Blog

Luca Guadagno, Western Resource Fellow | Luca is a Master of Environmental Science candidate at the Yale School of the Environment interested in the connections between nature based climate solutions, landscape-level conservation, and community-driven land stewardship. At YSE, he works on research and stakeholder engagement related to tree planting and forest management for multiple benefits, including for carbon drawdown, income generation, and ecosystem services. Before coming to YSE, Luca worked on human-wildlife coexistence research in Kenya and worked as an environmental educator. He received his B.S. in Biology and Environmental Science from Tufts University.  See what Luca has been up to.Blog

Madeline Gupta – Communications and Website Coordinator | Madeline Gupta is a student in Yale College studying computing science and ethnicity, race, and migration. She manages the website, graphics, and communications for UHPSI. Before working for UHPSI, she programmed for Kode with Klossy, an organization that teaches young gender minorities in computer science to code, and Indigenizing the News, a newsletter focused on elevating Native American issues and educating non-Native allies. Madeline is a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians and is interested in Indigenous advocacy, specifically in STEM and the environment. You can reach Madeline at madeline.gupta@yale.edu, or on Linkedin. 

Molly Ryan, Research Assistant | Molly Ryan is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment specializing in ecosystem management and conservation. She grew up in Flagstaff, Arizona, where she originally became interested in the intersection between people and natural places. Through her degree, Molly hopes to better understand the social aspects of conservation and land management, with a particular emphasis on stewardship behavior, environmental communication, and equity. Prior to YSE, Molly received her B.A. in Environmental Studies and Geography at Dartmouth College and worked as an analyst in the private sector conducting visitor use management research for the National Park Service. See what Molly has been up to.  |  Blog

Ryanna Fossum, Western Resource Fellow |Ryanna Fossum is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. She is interested in exploring integrated regional watershed management in the urbanized West. Prior to Yale, Ryanna researched California water policy to better engage local elected officials with community-led water resilience efforts. More recently, she worked on a range of urban design projects to confront public space challenges in New York City. She holds a BA from Oberlin College and majored in Geology and Environmental Studies. See what Ryanna has been up to.Blog

Scott Carpenter, Western Resource Fellow| Scott is a doctoral student in the School of the Environment at Yale University where he researches the impact of changing precipitation patterns on plant communities in the Intermountain West. Following his undergraduate degree at Princeton University, Scott worked as a project manager for an NSF-funded ecological study at Ol Pejeta conservancy, Kenya’s second largest cattle operation and premier rhino tourism destination. While living in central Kenya Scott developed an interest in mixed-use rangelands, particularly how increasing climate variability influences plant communities and the subsequent consequences for wildlife and livestock. His research in Southwest Wyoming focuses on the impacts of shifting precipitation patterns and increased variability for big sagebrush plant communities through a mix of process-based modeling, field experimentation and survey methods. See what Scott has been up to.  |  Blog

Shannon Bell, Western Resource Fellow and Research Assistant | Shannon is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment specializing in environmental policy analysis. She is particularly interested in collaborative policymaking and nature-based climate solutions in the Pacific Northwest, especially in her home state of Oregon. Shannon was inspired to return to the landscape where she was born and raised by both her education in environmental science and climate policy as well as her intimate connection with the diverse forest and highland desert ecosystems. She came to Yale after graduating from the University of British Columbia with a B.S. in Honors Environmental Science. See what Shannon has been up to.  |  Blog

Uthara Vengrai, Western Resource Fellow|Uthara Vengrai is a Master of Environmental Science candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. Her thesis research combines simulation modeling and field research to better understand the effects of land use practices and global change on biogeochemical fluxes and soil organic matter in dryland ecosystems. Originally from southern California, her academic interests are strongly motivated by a desire to produce research that helps inform and prepare communities in the West for the impacts of climate change. Uthara holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. See what Uthara has been up to.  |  Blog

Wyatt Klipa, Research Assistant | Wyatt Klipa is a Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of the Environment. He is interested in exploring the ways in which approaches of equity and engagement for local stakeholder groups most impacted by conservation policy and implementation of local knowledge can enhance effective community management of large ecosystems, particularly in the American West. Prior to starting at YSE, Wyatt spent the previous four years in environmental education in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. He holds a BS in Environmental Studies with a focus in Conservation Ecology from the University of Michigan.  See what Wyatt has been up to.  |  Blog