Ph.D. student,Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies / New York Botanical Garden
Selective logging and sustainability
Megan earned a B.S. in Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology from the Ohio State University in 2014. She has worked at field sites in Panama (2013), Flagstaff (2014), Gabon (2015), and China (2016), and has worked with a variety of datasets from Neotropical areas. While living and working for a year in Gabon, she learned a great deal about the relationship between local communities and forests, which impacted her view of scientific research, conservation, and outreach work immensely. She is eager to continue her research in Central Africa, encourage more integration between science and policy, and work with local communities. Her dissertation research focuses on the mechanisms of tree coexistence in tropical forests. In particular, she is interested in studying the interactions of plant traits with the environment and understanding how this relationship affects competitive processes. Ultimately, she hopes this understanding will allow us to better understand the processes in tropical ecosystems in general, thus allowing ecologists to make better predictive models for how forests will respond to changes – such as climate change and human disturbance through logging, hunting, and poaching – in our ever-changing world.