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PhD Candidate, Odette Mina, Wins Second Place in Graduate Student Competition at NABEC

Posted: July 17, 2015

Odette Mina, PhD Candidate in Dr. Heather Gall’s research group, won second place in the Graduate Student Oral Presentation Competition at the Northeast Agricultural and Biological Engineering Conference (NABEC) on July 14th, 2015. Her presentation was titled “Assessing the Occurrence, Fate, and Transport of Estrogens in Vernal Pools”. She collected water samples from three vernal pools at Penn State’s Living Filter, which are impacted by treated wastewater irrigation activities at the site, for a two month period from April to June and analyzed the samples for five estrogens. The study period coincided with the critical period for the metamorphosis of wood frog tadpoles, which could potentially be impacted by the presence of endocrine disrupting compounds in the vernal pools. Her major finding was that 100% of the samples collected over the study period contained estrogens, suggesting prolonged persistence of these compounds in the ponds, potentially due to low dissolved oxygen levels.