Sheree J. Watson, Ph. D.
ʻIke Wai Postdoctoral Fellow
Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center
A research cruise in the Columbia River estuary on board the RV Oceanus as part of the Center for Coastal Margin Observation and Prediction program (CMOP) http://www.stccmop.org/
I am from Montana and grew up all over the state spending my free time outside chasing frogs and turtles around my local rivers and lakes. I attended Montana State University and majored in Biology and minored in Chemistry, and after receiving my B.S. enrolled for a M.S. degree in marine science at University of Oregon’s – Oregon Institute of Marine Biology. During my master’s degree I studied a toxic marine diatom that caused closures of shellfish and crab fisheries off the Oregon coast. I have been hooked on aquatic microbiology ever since. After a long break working in STEM education I returned to school to complete a doctoral degree at Oregon Health & Science University’s – Institute of Environmental Health doing research on bacteria in the coastal mudflats of the Columbia River estuary. I would consider myself an environmental microbiologist and enjoy working with microbes that are indicators of environmental health or potentially useful in bioengineering technologies.
In between my stints as a graduate student I have worked in informal STEM outreach and as a middle and high school science teacher. I taught earth and physical science; biology and chemistry in Alaska, New Mexico and at home in Montana and am a certified 6-12th grade science teacher. I have a great passion to communicate science and connect people with their environments, and in particular to motivate students from underrepresented groups to pursue careers in STEM fields. I became interested in science through informal science education programs after school and on the weekends offered by local community scientists, and feel a responsibility to pay that forward to the next generation.
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Filtering surface and deep water from the Brownlee Reservoir on the Snake River in Idaho for metagenomic anlaysis of microbes that maybe involved in methylation of mercury.
Traveling to a study site in the Columbia River estuary to investigate differences amongst microbial communities in restored wetlands. For more information regarding this work go to: http://associations.sou.edu/aaaspd/Students/Leviton%20Research%20Award%20Reports/2015WatsonReport.pdf