Dr. Justyna Hampel
I am a broadly trained microbial ecologist/biogeochemist; my research combines geochemistry and environmental microbiology to answer questions on a large-scale ecosystem level. I aim to determine the environmental drivers of microbial community structure and activity and my research, pairing geochemical rate measurements with functional gene abundance, offers unique opportunity to couple microbial transformations with ecosystem functions.
My PhD dissertation with Dr. Silvia Newell (Newell Lab) focused on nitrogen cycling in aquatic systems affected by harmful algal blooms. The projects included: measuring nitrification and ammonium dynamics, and investigating nitrifier community structure in Lakes Taihu (China), Okeechobee (Florida), and Sandusky Bay (Lake Erie). I also investigated the effects of Hurricane Irma on the ammonia oxidizer community composition and Microcystis in Lake Okeechobee and the St. Lucie Estuary (Florida).
I am currently a postdoctoral research associate with Dr. Leila Hamdan (Hamdan Lab) at University of Southern Mississippi. My postdoc project focuses on exploration of shipwreck microbiomes in the Gulf of Mexico and is funded by NOAA's Ocean Exploration and Research Program.