Skip to Main Content

We provide a scholarly and social environment for the students of the FCE LTER conducting research in the Florida Everglades and adjacent ecosystems.

We support collaborative student research projects both within the FCE site as well as collaborations with all other LTER network sites. We will continue to pursue new technologies, sampling methods and ecological theories through collaboration with other LTER sites.

Graduate Student Executive Committee

  • FCE LTER Site Representative/President: Joshua Linenfelser
    Joshua Linenfelser

    Joshua Linenfelser is a second year Master's student in the department of Earth and Environment obtaining his degree in Environmental Studies. Joshua is advised under Dr. Jennifer Rehage in the Coastal Fisheries Ecology Lab, working towards his research in determining sources of nutrients in the Florida coastal Everglades and how they may alter the surrounding ecosystem. With this research he hopes to inform future management practices within South Florida to maintain healthy natural ecosystems for future generations. Joshua intends to focus his efforts as president of the FCE student group toward further growing a network of FCE researchers and enthusiasts. He hopes to spark engagement and collaboration among members through a series of group events which will aid to support a more cohesive group. 

  • Vice President: Shanna Stingu
    Shanna Stingu

    Shanna Stingu, PhD student 
    I received a bachelor's in marine science with a minor in Geology at Florida Gulf Coast University. Undergrad research involved whole rock geochemistry and conservation paleobiology. I attended the University of Florida where I worked on a master's in Soil Science and was also employed as a Biological Scientist running the soils lab. I transferred to FIU prior to completing my master's degree as I wanted to concentrate on wetland biogeochemistry and wetland ecology. As a graduate student I will be investigating how wetlands respond and adapt to changes due to various factors such sea level rise, specifically looking at how to increase soil elevation, maintain soils, and understand the soil processes involved. When not engaging in research activities, you can find me in the Everglades on a boat. 

  • Secretary: Tommy Shannon
    Tommy Shannon

    Tommy Shannon is a third year PhD candidate at FIU in the Department of Biological Sciences. Tommy is a student in Dr. Evelyn Gaiser's lab, and is conducting research on the metacommunity dynamics and resilience of Everglades algal-microbial periphyton communities in response to seawater intrusion. Parts of his work will be conducted alongside FCE-LTER experimental research projects in the coastal Everglades. Tommy's interest in being the FCE student group secretary stems from his desire to promote a welcoming, accessible, and diverse community of Everglades-related researchers and students who can collaboratively generate ideas and enjoy the incredible Everglades environment. Tommy hopes to develop student-led communication and outreach projects, collaborative workshop events, and Everglades-immersive experiential learning opportunities.

  • Treasurer: Alan Mock
    Alan Mock

    Alan Mock is a PhD student advised by Dr. Joel Trexler in the Department of Biological Sciences. His research focuses on understanding food-web linkages between different compartments of the Everglades ecosystem. He is currently working to understand community assembly dynamics of aquatic animals and their impact on the flux of emerging aquatic insects.

    His aim is to document the dynamics of cross-ecotone exchanges of biota in the Everglades and infer potential impacts restoration may have on the availability of aquatic-based organisms that subsidize the diet of non-aquatic animals. As treasurer, Alan hopes to support the growth of the FCE LTER community by managing funds needed to facilitate collaboration among the FCE network.

  • BBC Representative: Hyo Won Lee
    Hyo Won Lee

    Hyo Won Lee (Sean) is a Ph.D. Student in Dr. Joel Trexler's lab in the Department of Biological Sciences at Florida International University. Sean is interested in theoretical modeling of food web and animal behaviors.

  • Off-Site Representative: Zhuoran Yu
    Zhuoran Yu

    Zhuoran Yu is a second-year master’s student in the Biological Science Department of the University of Alabama and a fellow of the ForEverglades Foundation. She is co-advised by Dr. Gregory Starr and Dr. Christina Staudhammer. Her research is on methane emissions from freshwater marshes in the Florida Everglades using the Eddy Covariance techniques. Her main goal is to identify drivers of methane release from subtropical natural wetlands and enhance the understanding of the carbon cycle in the Everglades. As the off-campus representative, Zhuoran wishes to reach out to students who are not currently at FIU and provide opportunities for them to stay more connected with the FCE student group. Furthermore, she hopes to hold virtual events to help students who could not visit their site often due to distance or the COVID-19 pandemic to get familiar with the Everglades.

  • Faculty Advisor: Dr. John Kominoski
    John Kominoski

    Dr. Kominoski is the lead principal investigator of the FCE LTER program and the faculty advisor for FCE LTER Graduate Student Group. He has been mentoring FCE LTER graduate students since joining the FCE LTER program in 2012.