I am a 6th year PhD student in Dr. Cathy Pfister's lab at the University of Chicago. My research explores the roles of evolutionary history and functional diversity in nearshore coastal communities, and how these communities respond to disturbance along differential environmental gradients. I am studying the role these factors play in the maintenance of a high-diversity algal assemblage (seaweed!) in the northeast Pacific intertidal ecosystem through a combination of field manipulations and phylogenetic, physiological and functional analyses. A key environmental change in the northeast Pacific is the decrease in ocean pH recorded in the locales I study (termed ocean acidification). Because seaweeds are principal interactors with the nearshore carbon cycle, a functional attribute of seaweeds that I continue to focus on is carbon uptake by seaweeds.