Announcing This Year's Earth and Environmental and Climate Justice Scholars
Students are advancing transformative environmental research at the Institute
- Impactful work by scholars includes developing wildfire-resilient construction methods; engaging the unhoused in equitable climate change policy; estimating how drinking water notifications affect birth outcomes; and uplifting Indigenous perspectives.
The UC Davis Institute of the Environment and Environmental and Climate Justice Hub are excited to announce this year’s cohort of Earth Scholars and Environmental and Climate Justice Scholars, who are key to our efforts to build a network of scholars engaged in collaborative and transformative environmental research.
Earth Scholars are graduate students who advance progress on the Institute’s pillars and initiatives, and Environmental and Climate Justice Scholars engage in work that clearly contributes to environmental justice, including the resolution of environmental inequalities or the improvement of environmental health.
Each scholar is awarded $5,000 and given the option to connect with an Environmental Fellow and undergraduate Sustainability Scholars to collaborate toward implementing environmental and climate solutions.
Among the impactful work being done by scholars this year is developing affordable, sustainable, and wildfire resilience construction methods; engaging the unhoused to inform equitable climate change policy; estimating how drinking water contamination notifications affect birth outcomes; and uplifting Indigenous perspectives and knowledge.
This year's scholars are:
Ava-Rose, a Ph.D. student in the Graduate Group in Ecology and UC Rangelands Lab, focuses on research examining how stacked climate smart ranching techniques impact soil ecosystem multifunctionality and native species restoration in California rangelands that includes collaboration and outreach to ranchers, community members, and schools.
Marie is a Ph.D. student in the Graduate Group in Ecology. Fleming’s work seeks to research pathways for the revitalization of Indigenous Traditional Ecological Knowledge to inform the co-designing of a larger community-centered biocultural land restoration and re-envisioning project in northeastern Madagascar.
Lupe, a Ph.D. student in the Geography Graduate Group, undertakes research recognizing that climate change disproportionately affects communities with pre-existing challenges and focuses on centering underrepresented populations, such as the unhoused, in equitable climate change policy that meets procedural justice.
Heather is a Ph.D. student in the Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry Graduate Group. Heather examines how soil emissions contribute to air pollution precursors in the Salton Sea Air Basin in collaboration with Comité Cívico del Valle. Heather is also helping guide community participation in mural designs for the Institute’s California Climate Art Trail.
Connor is a Ph.D. student in the Graduate Group in Ecology. Magee’s project will support and cultivate an Indigenous-led working group as part of an ongoing effort to develop equitable pathways for uplifting Indigenous perspectives and values in coastal resilience initiatives in Southern California.
Mehrab is a Ph.D. student in Civil and Environmental Engineering whose work is based on previous research on using nature-based earthen construction to increase the wildfire resilience of underserved and/or economically disadvantaged communities. His research aims to develop new methods to advance affordable and sustainable earthen construction and increase wildfire resilience.
Dylan, a first-year Ph.D. student in the Graduate Group in Geography and a second-year M.S. student in the Community Development Graduate Group, is pursuing research examining how cultural burning practitioners and advocates are increasing the willingness of public land agencies to co-manage with Tribal Nations and organizations.
Laura is a Ph.D. student in Agricultural and Resource Economics. Quiñones’ research includes pairing detailed water samplings with infant health data to estimate how notifications for the presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in drinking water affect birth outcomes such as birthweight and birth anomalies.
Anuj, a Ph.D. student in the Performance Studies Graduate Group, is pursuing a project that centers stories of land and water in Yolo County and invites the community to participate in guided soundwalks across the region to learn about Wintun homeland perspectives on ecology and environmental stewardship.
Alyx is a Ph.D. student in the Geography Graduate Group and the Community Development Department. Volzer’s work will aid our understanding of securing the social determinants of health and mental health in a world made more precarious by climate change and considers how successful recovery from climate-induced disasters is influenced by pre-disaster socioeconomic conditions.
Learn more about our Environmental Faculty Fellows and Scholars program by clicking here.
Adam Jensen is the Strategic Communications Manager for the Institute of the Environment.