The HSHW Team

AgWater Team and collaborators at the 2023 Conservation Drainage Network Meeting (Easton, MD)


Dr. Vinayak Shedekar
Dr. Shedekar is an Assistant Professor of Agricultural Water Management in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE) at The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio. He also serves as the Director of the International Program for Water Management in Agriculture and the Overholt Drainage Education and Research Program in FABE. His current research is focused on agricultural water management, and involves monitoring and modeling of soil health, hydrology, and water quality from field- to watershed-scales. His team works at the intersection of soil health and agricultural water management for water quality and agricultural sustainability.
Visit Dr. Shedekar’s website

Dr. Manal Askar
Manal is a Research Scientist in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE) at The Ohio State University (OSU) since March 2024. Her research is focused on studying the individual and combined effect of different management practices on nutrient fate and transport in agriculture lands using both modeling and field studies. More specifically, she focuses on investigating the factors that control edge-of-field nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) losses. During her PhD at North Carolina State University (NCSU), Manal developed DRAINMOD-P that simulates P dynamics and losses from agricultural fields. She is conducting further testing and enhancements to make DRAINMOD-P a useful tool for evaluating the effect of conservation practices on edge-of-field P losses.

Anmol Gill
Anmol is a Researcher 1 in the FABE department, working with Dr. Vinayak Shedekar to revise the water and groundwater resource factsheets for Ohio’s various counties. Before joining the team in February 2024, Anmol completed her master’s degree in Agricultural Engineering in the FABE department, where she worked on Hyperspectral Sensing of Winter Wheat Foliar Nutrients and Yield.

Elizabeth Schwab
Elizabeth is a Research Associate 2 in the FABE Department working with Dr. Shedekar to coordinate activities of the Overholt Drainage Education and Research Program and International Program for Water Management in Agriculture, such as field days, research projects, and the annual Overholt Drainage School. Elizabeth’s research work spans the social and physical sciences and is broadly focused on agricultural land and water management. Elizabeth holds B.S. degrees in Agronomy and Environmental Science from Iowa State University and an M.S. in Environmental Science from The Ohio State University. Hobbies outside of work include engaging in outdoor recreation, reading, music, and various handicrafts.

Postdoctoral Scholars

Dr. Ahmed Awad
Ahmed is a Postdoctoral Scholar in the FABE Department. Dr. Awad received his Ph.D. in Agricultural Water and Soil Engineering from Yangzhou University, China. Broadly, his interest is in the fields of agricultural water management and farmlands and urban hydrology. He has authored and contributed research to several review articles and book chapters on the topics of on land and water management, and his current research focuses on irrigation and drainage water management and farmlands hydrology and water quality.

Dr. Fariba Babaeian
Fariba is a Postdoctoral Scholar in the FABE Department, working with Dr. Vinayak Shedekar. Fariba earned her Ph.D. in Water Resources Engineering from Tarbiat Modares University in Iran. Her research interests focus on integrated river basin simulation, hydrological and processes, water quality (pollution loads), agricultural water management – particularly using the SWAT model – water accounting, as well as evaluating climate change impacts and adaptation strategies on water resources and agricultural systems. Her current research is centered on monitoring and predicting the impact of soil health practices on hydrology and water quality at both field and watershed scales. Outside of her professional career, Fariba enjoys traveling, cooking, sports, and watching movies.
Google Scholar Profile

Graduate Students

Mithlesh is a PhD student in the FABE department at The Ohio State University, supervised by Dr. Vinayak Shedekar. He completed his M.S. in Soil Science from India and previously worked as a research assistant in Agricultural Water Management at Punjab Agricultural University, India. His research interests center on the relationship between soil health and agricultural water management. Currently, his research focuses on the impact of different drainage intensities and struvite (P-fertilizer) on soil health, water quality and crop yield potential. Specifically, he investigates P-fertilizers and drainage management practices to reduce P fate and transport from agricultural lands while maintaining the yield potential in Northwest Ohio.

Toni Chinchar
Toni Chinchar is an M.S. student in the FABE department, working under Dr. Vinayak Shedekar. Before she joined the team, Toni graduated from Ohio State with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. During her time as an undergraduate student, Toni worked for the USDA-ARS lab and interned with the Ohio EPA, where she developed interests in agriculture and water management. Toni spends her free time engaging in multiple outdoor activities including rock climbing, hiking, backpacking, and taking her cat on walks. She also enjoys traveling and spending time with her friends and family.

Charles Dochoff
Charles Dochoff is an M.S. student in the FABE department. He completed his undergraduate degree in Agricultural and Biological Engineering at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He has interests in edge-of-field agricultural practices, such as phosphorus filters, saturated buffers, and bioreactors.

Jeremy Salvo
Jeremy Salvo is a second year M.S. student at Ohio State University’s School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR). Jeremy grew up in Tuscarawas County, OH. His research focuses on tile drainage and drainage water management. Specifically, how automated drainage water management (ADWM) may improve nutrient loss and crop yields compared to controlled tile drainage. Jeremy is a graduate student of Dr. Steven W. Lyon but works with the HSHW Team through this research project. In the summer of 2022, Jeremy completed his B.S. in geology at Kent State University. He is passionate about the environment and sustainability, hoping to contribute to a productive future with a focus on healthy ecosystems.

Ella Nichols
Ella Nichols is an M.S. student in the FABE department. She graduated from OSU in the fall 2023 with a B.S. in environmental engineering.  She began working as an undergraduate research assistant for the department in the fall of 2022. Ella is from Powell, Ohio, which is just a short drive from Columbus Campus.

Undergraduate Students

Therese Demesa
Therese Demesa is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering and is particularly interested in sustainable water usage and water resource management. She grew up in Central Ohio, graduating from New Albany High School. Therese has been with the team since April of 2022.

Daniel Meyer
Daniel Meyer is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Agroecology and is in his senior year. Daniel is interested in sustainable farming practices to better local environments and prevention of non-source point runoff. He is from Sunbury Ohio where his family has a small farm.

Jacob Bzdafka
Jacob Bzdafka is a recent graduate from OSU with a B.S. in Earth Sciences and a certificate in hydrogeology. Jacob is interested in reservoir modeling and using GIS to measure stream bank erosion. He is from Solon Ohio which is a short drive from Cleveland Ohio.

Former team members

Harmanpreet Singh Grewal
Harmanpreet holds a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Engineering from Punjab Agricultural University, India. Currently, he is pursuing a master’s degree in Bioresource Engineering at McGill University in Canada. During his master’s, Harmanpreet trained at the Ohio State University for five months as part of a research exchange program. Harmanpreet’s research focuses on water resources management in agriculture. His master’s research involves water quality modelling using data from Ohio, with the goal to improve the existing models. He is particularly interested in water policy, management, and governance, and represents the province of Quebec at the Student and Young Professional Committee of the Canadian Water Network. Through his research on water quality modelling, and his active involvement in water policy, management, and governance, he strives to contribute to the development of sustainable practices and policies in agriculture.

Chris McNabb
Chris is a former M.S. student.

Jeff Nogaj
Jeff is a former undergraduate student.

Alyssa Madinger
Alyssa is a former Research Technician 3.