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A Note from Newly Appointed GSA Leader Blaize Denfeld

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The Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network (GLEON) is supported in part by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under Grant Number DBI RCN 0639229 and MSB 1137327, 1137353 and other generous donors. This blog receives technical support from the Center for Limnology (CFL) at University of Wisconsin-Madison and Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies. Any information, opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this blog are those of the individual author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of NSF, CFL, Cary Institute, GLEON or GLEON Student Association (GSA).


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Photo: Blaize Denfeld under ice lake research. Source: Blaize Denfield.

GSA co-chair elect Blaize Denfield conducting under ice lake research in Sweden.

By Blaize Denfeld

I gratefully accepted a recent appointment as co-chair elect of the Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network (GLEON) Graduate Student Association (GSA), the newest member of the GSA leadership team, joining GSA chair, Jennie Brentrup (Miami University, USA) and co-chair Facundo Scordo (Universidad Nacional del Sur, Argentina). One of my first assignments is to briefly introduce myself to the GLEON community.

I am currently a PhD student in the Limnology Department, Uppsala University, Sweden. I am supervised by GLEON member Gesa Weyhenmeyer, and my research focuses on under ice lake water CO2 and CH4 dynamics and subsequent emissions at ice melt. My research spans over many scales from high frequency CO2 measurements for a single lake to regional, long-term CO2 measurements from many lakes. In a broader context, I am interested in winter limnology and the effects of a changing climate on lake-ice dynamics and subsequent alterations to the carbon cycle.

I first heard about GLEON during a discussion at Fika (Swedish coffee break) in 2011 when a visiting professor (GLEON member Craig Williamson) mentioned the mentoring and training opportunities GLEON provides for PhD students. I attended my first GLEON event at the GSA Summer workshop in 2012 “Cyber-Enabled Ecological Analysis in the Network Era” at Trout Lake Station, Wisconsin, USA. This GLEON workshop provided useful skills that could be applied to my PhD work and exposure to an amazing group of passionate limnologists. After the workshop, I was hooked and wanted to continue my connection to GLEON. I have since participated in the GLEON 15 and GLEON 16 annual meetings, taking part in the GSA pre-meeting workshops and in the lake metabolism working group.

As part of the GLEON GSA leadership team, I will have the opportunity to further my connection to GLEON. In addition, I will be able to combine my interests in organizational leadership with my passion for scientific research. I hope to draw on my past experiences working with other organizations; as social organizer for Uppsala University doctoral students, overseeing the activities of a student group on a 1-month course in Luxembourg, participating in the Polaris Project as a returning student researcher in Siberia for a 2-month summer venture, and as athletic outreach coordinator during my undergraduate studies at Clark University.

I look forward to joining the GSA leadership team in mentoring students and enabling the next generation of scientists to participate in collaborative, international, and interdisciplinary network science. After all, I was attracted to GLEON because of its profound vision and enthusiastic membership; I hope as a GSA leader I can pay it forward and convey the same message to future GLEON students.


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