December 7, 2016

Current Students

Jake Barker, Research Assistant | Jake Barker is a Masters of Forestry candidate interested in forest management, public lands, and conservation. Prior to YSE, Jake worked around the country for the USDA Forest Service Enterprise Program in Timber Sale Preparation, and for a sustainable forestry company in Oregon. Born and raised in Steamboat Springs, CO, Jake received a BA in History of Art and Architecture from Middlebury College. When he isn’t measuring trees, Jake enjoys cycling, trail running, playing cribbage, and splitboarding.  See what Jake has been up to.  |  Blog

Kathleen Voight, Research Assistant | Kathleen Voight is a Master of Environmental Science candidate interested in agricultural land management throughout the Rocky Mountain West. Her research focuses on resiliency and drought adaptation in crop production and livestock grazing in southern Colorado. Prior to coming to the Yale School of the Environment, Kathleen worked in environmental education and in agriculture, growing diversified vegetables and raising pastured livestock, in Colorado. Kathleen holds a BA in History of Art from Yale University and she is a current Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Fellow. In her free time, Kathleen likes to bike, hike, and ski as often as possible. See what Kathleen has been up to.  |  Blog

Julia Chen, Research Assistant | Julia Chen is a Master of Forestry candidate at the Yale School of the Environment focusing on forest management issues in the American West. Julia received a B.S. in Ecosystem Management and Forestry and Microbiology from UC Berkeley, where her love for conifer forests developed. Prior to YSE, her work with the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology concentrated on amphibian conservation and mapping species ranges. In her free time, Julia enjoys playing tuba and hiking. See what Julia has been up to.  |  Blog

Sam Wilson, Research Assistant | Sam Wilson is a graduate student at Yale School of the Environment working towards a Masters in Environmental Science, focusing on using remote sensing, big data, and field work to analyze relationships in rangeland ecosystems. He received a B.S. in Geography from Montana State University in 2019 and spent the next few years living in Bozeman, Montana. While there summers were spent working in rangelands on a long term monitoring protocol with the BLM and winters were spent using satellite imagery to map wetlands for the National Wetlands Inventory. In his free time he enjoys skiing, hiking, reading, and learning! .  |  Blog

Rowan Sharkey, Research Assistant | Rowan Sharkey, Research Assistant | Rowan Sharkey is a Masters of Environmental Management candidate at Yale School of the Environment, focusing specifically on ecosystem management and conservation. Having received her B.A. in Data Analytics and Environmental Studies at Denison University, her interest lies in environmental data analyzation, story telling, and communication. Prior to Yale, Rowan was a Princeton in Africa fellow, where she worked with regenerative agriculture and nutrition accessibility in Kenya. Growing up in rural Ohio, she holds a deep connection to the land and is curious about best management and restoration practices.  | See what Rowan has been up to.  |  Blog

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

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, or on Linkedin.