(© Melanie Quiñones-Santiago)
I am a Ph.D. student in the Environmental Life Sciences program at Arizona State University (ASU). Born and raised in Bayamón, Puerto Rico, my undergraduate studies were at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus, in the Environmental Sciences Program. Through my undergraduate years, I have been working on topics like mating mechanisms in Red-Eyed Tree frogs in Costa Rica, community outreach in Puerto Rico, and how drought affects nitrogen cycles at El Yunque National Forest. Moreover, I have researched how antibacterial and anti-fungal properties of algae's allelopathy at New Mexico State University and how wildfires affect the nitrogen cycle at the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta with the Polaris Project at Woodwell Climate Research Center. Currently, I am part of Heather Throop's lab at ASU. My research is about how grass root functional traits: 1) are affected by different abiotic conditions and species, 2) the relationship of root traits and mycorrhizal colonization and 3) how root traits affect drylands soil properties.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
ESA 2021 Forrest Shreve Research Award
2018-2023 NSF GRFP Fellow
2013-2018 Toyota's Environmental Scholarship Fellow
2014 Fonalleda's Scholarship