Congratulations to Tomko and Benefiel on successful defenses

Congratulations to Bri Tomko and Ryan Benefiel for successfully defending their senior theses with research distinction last week. We will miss all the undergraduate researchers who have been a part of our team this year, including Kat Meiner (Fall 2021, OSU), Mazvita Chikomo (Spring 2022, Wooster), Bri Tomko (Spring 2022, OSU), and Ryan Benefiel (Spring 2022, OSU).

Welcome to new group members

Our team is growing! We welcome new group members Lauren Decker (MS student), Christian Roumelis (MS student), and Xiaolang Zhang (postdoctoral scientist). Lauren arrived in June and kicked off her research with a busy summer field season in Ohio agricultural streams. Christian and Xiaolang arrived this fall and will be modeling hyporheic flow in mountain streams with log jams.

Postdoc opportunities

We have 2 new postdoc opportunities in our research group:

Modeling stream-groundwater interactions in response to beaver activity and forest fire: (

Modeling reactive transport in floodplain aquifers: (

We value diversity in our lab group. Scientists from underrepresented groups are particularly encouraged to apply.

Awards to Hannah Field

Congratulations to Hannah Field for winning the AGI’s Harriet Wallace Scholarship in support of her MS research. Hannah also received Honorable Mention in the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship competition. Hannah studies phosphorus transport in small agricultural streams.

Welcome Rene Castillo

This semester, we welcome new group member Rene Castillo. Rene comes to us from Texas A&M to pursue her MS. She will be working on groundwater recharge in Tanzania and the impacts of climate change on groundwater resources.

Research grants awarded to Clyne and Wilhelmsen

Congratulations to Jacob Clyne and Karl Wilhelmsen for winning GSA Graduate Student Research Grants and to Jacob Clyne for a Sigma Xi Grant. Jacob’s awards will support his work on “A Dynamic Water Table: Its Impact on Carbon Cycling, Water Quality, Microbial Diversity, and Soil Respiration.” Karl’s award will support his work on “Impacts of Log Jam Formation and Structure on Hyporheic Exchange.” Our research group went 4/4 on funded student proposals this past year (see my other post on Deon Knights’ NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship)! I am honored to work with a talented and committed team of students, current and past members included.

Kira and Alex defend senior theses with research distinction

Congratulations to Kira Harris and Alex Brown for defending their senior theses with research distinction. They did an excellent job navigating the new format of virtual presentations. Alex Brown’s thesis is entitled: “Characterization of surficial sediments from an island of Wax Lake Delta, Louisiana (USA).” Kira Harris’s thesis is entitled: “Geomorphic and sedimentological controls on hyporheic flow in an alpine river.” Upon graduation, Alex Brown will begin a geotechnical position at Hammond Construction, and Kira Harris will begin graduate school at University of Arizona.

Deon Knights receives NSF postdoctoral fellowship

Congratulations to Deon Knights for receiving a NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship to study Arctic river deltas with Chris Russoniello at West Virginia University. Deon is currently finishing his PhD on nutrient transport in coastal systems, with a focus on temperate deltas.

Blast from the past

Found this old photo from our A Sawyer Lab v D Sawyer Lab kickball match. D Sawyer’s group won (again) but it had to be luck. Time for a rematch…