VCU Rice Center

Photo of ferns

Previous projects

Rebekha Archibald

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Rodney Dyer
Project title: An alien invasion: How the invasive species, Microstigeum viminium affects the germination and growth of midcanopy trees (Cornus florida and Cercis canadensis) in a disturbed and undisturbed pine-oak forest.

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Rodney Dyer
Project title: Seed dispersal and recruitment in the under story forest tree Cornus florida

Gina Beale

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas
Project title: Bacterial respiration and net ecosystem metabolism along a riverine-estuarine gradient in the James River

Alice Besterman and Laurel Schablein

B.S. students
Adviser: Lesley Bulluck, Ph.D.
Project title: The relationship between food availability and reproduction in a Neotropical migratory songbird, the Prothonotary Warbler

Melissa Caviness

M.E. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Peter deFur
Project title: Elementary environmental education at the VCU Rice Center

Elizabeth Collins

M.E. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Chris Gough, Ph.D.
Project title: Forest carbon sequestration and nitrogen retention in response to chronic nutrient amendments

Stephanie Crouch

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Rodney Dyer
Project title: Spatial genetic structure of the spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum)

James Deemy

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Edward Crawford, Ph.D.
Project title: Spatial patterns of herbaceous and woody vegetative recruitment in a naturally restored tidal freshwater wetland: former Lake Charles at the VCU Rice Center for Environmental Studies

Morgan Duke and Nathan Conway

B.S. students, Biology
Adviser: Lesley Bulluck, Ph.D.
Project title: Prothonotary Warbler breeding density in natural and nest box sites and factors influencing nest box selection

Amanda Duvall

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Michael Fine
Project title: Growth of pectoral spines of Virginia catfishes

Christopher Egghart

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Cliff Fox
Project title: Reconstructive account of the physiographic and ecological changes on the lower James River

Megan English

B.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Ed Crawford
Project title: Vegetation analysis of tidal forested wetland habitats at the Rice Center

Autumn Frandson

B.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Ed Crawford
Project title: Characterization of vegetation within the tidal forested wetland habitat at the Rice Center

John Furry

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: Characterizing planktonic bacterial pathogens in the Lower James River

Vasiliki Gardiakos

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Rodney Dyer
Project title: Insect-mediated pollen movement in flowering dogwood: an analysis of gene flow in Cornus florida

Zack Ghahramani

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Mike Fine, Ph.D.
Project title: Variation in sound production in the blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus.

Susie Gifford

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Leigh McCallister, Ph.D.
Project title: Changes in phytoplankton communities with rising CO2 in freshwater and saltwater ecosystems: a method development study

Jaime Gillespie

B.S. student, Environmental Studies
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: A study of microbial community similarity among freshwater wetlands in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Catherine Heidrich

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Rodney Dyer
Project title: Who’s your daddy? An investigation of extra-pair copulation in Prothontaria citrea

Colleen Higgins

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Bonnie Brown
Project title: Invasion genetics of the Blue Catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) in large river ecosystems

Holly Houtz

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Leonard Smock
Project title: Invertebrate and egg bank community structure during seasonal inundation of forested, isolated wetlands

William Iserberg

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas, Ph.D.
Project title: Nutriet sources supporting chronic algal blooms in the tidal freshwater James River estuary

Amy Jenkins

Ph.D. student, Integrative Life Sciences
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: Wetland microbial carbon and nitrogen cycling

Jessica Kidder

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Edward Crawford, Ph.D.
Project title: Quantification and evolution of hydric edaphic characteristics in a wetland restoration setting

Catherine Luria

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas, Ph.D.
Project title: Are metabolic activity states of aquatic bacteria responsive to availability of nutrients and labile organic matter?

Christina Lynchesky

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas
Project title: Mechanisms regulating light attenuation in riverine, tidal-freshwater and estuarine segments of the James River

Amy Macdonald

M.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas
Project title: Landscape factors regulating phytoplankton production in the Ohio, Mississippi and Missouri Rivers

Crystal A. Meadows

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Rodney Dyer, Ph.D.
Project title: Using integrative landscape genetic techniques to determine environmental barriers to gene flow in Cornus florida L. (Cornacea) an insect pollinated understory

Rana Mehr

B.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: Microbial physiological profiles in an emergent freshwater marsh

Amberly Moon

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Joy Ware, Ph.D.
Project title: Head-start juvenile and adult resident Eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina): Winter ecology and survivorship

Jonathan Moore

Ph.D. student, Biology, Virginia Tech
Adviser: Jeffrey Walters, Ph.D.
Project title: Response of prothonotary warblers to climate change induced mistiming of breeding events

Ember Morrissey

Ph.D. student, Integrated Life Sciences
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: Linking resource availability to the structure and function of microbial nitrate reducers in freshwater wetlands

Eliza Nash

B.A. student, L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs
Adviser: Amber Bennett
Project title: Black rat and human ecological interactions in the James River Colonial region

Christine Prasse

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Rima Franklin, Ph.D.
Project title: Hydrology and vegetation effects on microbal community structure and extracellular enzyme activity in the sediments of freshwater wetlands

Anna Riggan

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Kevin Caillouet, Ph.D.
Project title: Bird - mosquito interactions

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Kevin Caillouet, Ph.D.
Project title: Nest mosquito trap: ecological profiling and disease transmission

Anne Schlegel

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas, Ph.D.
Project title: The influence of rainfall and tidal surge events on water quality in Kimages Creek

Amanda Schutt and Drew Garey

M.S. and Ph.D. students
Adviser: Leonard Smock
Project title: Using macroinvertebrate community composition to distinguish between natural and anthropogenic sediment in the James River watershed

Casey Seelig

B.S. student, Department of Biology
Adviser: Greg Garman
Project title: Monitoring seasonal fish communities in a tidal freshwater creek

Sheri A. Shiflett

Ph.D. student, Life Sciences
Adviser: Don Young, Ph.D.
Project title: Comparisons of physiology, anatomy, and structure among three evergreen shrubs in a temperate forest understory

Molly Sobotka

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas, Ph.D.
Project title: Legacy sediments in streams: effects on nutrient partitioning during simulated resuspension events

Michael Trop

M.S. student, Center for Environmental Studies
Adviser: Paul Bukaveckas, Ph.D.
Project title: Investigation of water quality in Kimages Creek

Katie Wallace

M.S. student, Biology
Adviser: Ghislaine Mayer, Ph.D.
Project title: Molecular analysis of vectors of avian malaria and flaviviruses on breeding grounds of Prothontary Warblers in Central Virginia