UTS Environmental Science research students continue to be recognised not only for the importance of their projects but also for their communication skills. Recent successes include:
Daniela Cortez (PhD candidate, School of the Environment, Centre for Environmental Sustainability)
Daniela was awarded the best oral presentation by an honours student at the combined conference of the Australian Society for Limnology (ASL) and the New Zealand Freshwater Science Society held in Brisbane. Her Honours research investigated the impact of dams on natural river systems.
Earlier in the year Daniela was awarded the 2011 Peter Cullen postgraduate scholarship for her PhD project that will assess the environmental impact of taking water from rivers during low flow periods.
Daniela is supervised by Associate Professor Richard Lim
Tara Konarzewski (PhD candidate, Plant Functional Biology and Climate Change Cluster, Biodiversity Research Group)
Tara was awarded first prize for her poster presentation at the CSIRO PhD and Postdoctoral Forum. Tara’s research into evolutionary traits related to the success of invasive weed species like Patterson’s Curse is part of a long-term research program designed to examine the potential impacts of climate-induced population bottlenecks on the resilience and diversity of plant communities in semi-arid regions of Australia.
Tara is supervised by Dr Brad Murray (UTS) and Dr Robert Godfree (CSIRO)
Rathini Mahendran (Honours, Environmental Science),
Rathini won the prize for best Honours student presentation at the NSW Division of the Geological Society of Australia's annual Honours night in Sydney. This follows on from her earlier success at the Australian Space Science Conference in Canberra, in September, where she was also awarded first prize for best Honours presentation. Rathini’s Honours project used high resolution data from NASA missions to date different surfaces on Mars.
Rathini was supervised by Dr Graziella Caprarelli
Leigh Martin (PhD candidate, Plant Functional Biology and Climate Change Cluster, Biodiversity Research Group)
Leigh was awarded the prize for the best student presentation at the Ecological Society of Australia Conference held in Hobart. Leigh presented field data collected to test the prediction that exotic plants, substantially different in growth form to the invaded habitat have a comparatively larger effect on native reptile populations than exotic plants that are similar to dominant native plant species of invaded vegetation.
Leigh is supervised by Dr Brad Murray
Olivia Sackett (PhD candidate, Plant Functional Biology and Climate Change Cluster)
Olivia was awarded first prize for her poster presented at the 3rd Polar Marine Diatom Workshop in Sydney. Participants at the workshop were a collection of diatomists (people who study diatoms) from 12 countries and a variety of applications including palaeontology, oceanography, ecology and climate reconstruction science.
Olivia is using biospectroscopy, to look at the cellular composition of sea-ice microalgae to get some insight into how changing environmental conditions might affect cell function. As part of her research project she was granted three days “beam time” at the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne: a $220m facility that produces intense beams of light from electrons moving at just under the speed of light. Olivia was the first UTS scientist to use the synchrotron to look at microalgae.
Olivia’s principal supervisor at UTS is Professor Peter Ralph.