About Me

I am a graduate student  at UC Berkeley in Integrative Biology in Dr. Wayne Sousa's lab and a graduate of Pomona College in Claremont, CA, where I received a BA in Biology. I entered college expecting to attend medical school, but during my time there (and one mid-college crisis later), I discovered my zeal for tackling ecological questions and for sharing this passion with others. After repeated excursions collecting soil and arthropods at our research field station left me covered in dirt, my friends dubbed me "Dirt Girl," and it stuck. Since then, I have embraced my inner "Dirt Girl," studying the effects of landscape transformations and plant invasions on ground-dwelling arthropods, nutrient sequestration, and litter decomposition in California. Check out my blog and research page and visit the Sousa lab website to follow my "Dirt Girl" adventures! This site is not just about research though! Look out for musings and pictures  about my life as a graduate student and nature-lover navigating young adulthood.

 
 photo by Mackenzie Dipman

photo by Mackenzie Dipman

 
  In the spring,
  at the end of the day,
  you should smell like dirt.
  Margaret Atwood