LTER Graduate Writing Fellows

Each year, the LTER Network Office supports several Graduate Writing Fellows, who write stories about the wide range of LTER science. These includes updates on current research and deep dives into the people, daily life, and long-term vision of LTER sites. 

The fellowship allows students to learn and practice science communication in a formal setting, with ample support from trained communication professionals at the Network Office. Fellows are paid for their work and build a strong online portfolio of writing samples that add credibility to the fellowship.

Applications for new fellows open in the late summer or fall each year. For questions, contact the Network Office.

Going into my LTER Graduate Writing Fellowship, I had little experience with writing outside of publication for peer review. The LTER graduate writing program gave me the support and training that I needed to feel confident and comfortable writing in a different style for a different audience. 

Tim Ohlert, 2021 Fellow

Current Fellows

Abigail Borgmeier

Abigail Borgmeier is a graduate student student at Brigham Young University studying Antarctic nematode phylogeography. She works with Byron Adams at the McMurdo Dry Valleys LTER site.

Dante Capone

Dante Capone is a PhD Student at Scripps Institution of Oceanography studying biological oceanography and a member of the California Current Ecosystem LTER site. His research in the Décima Lab examines environmental patterns of zooplankton diversity and the effects of wildfires on marine ecosystems.

Dante Capone

Mary Linabury

Mary Linabury is a PhD candidate in Melinda Smith’s grassland ecology lab at Colorado State University. She studies the effect of long-term resource alteration in grassland ecosystems. In particular, she wants to understand how plant community dynamics interact with changing resource availability to shape the future of great plains grasslands, and works at the Konza Prairie LTER.

Nick Link

Nick Link is a second year PhD student at Northern Arizona University. Nick’s work with Michelle Mack and Xanthe Walker out of the Bonanza Creek LTER is broadly focused on disturbance and ecosystem ecology in the Boreal forest.

Meredith Willmott

Meredith Willmott an urban ecologist focused on entomology and science communication. Based at Rutgers University, she works with Amy Savage and the Sevilleta LTER site.

Past Fellows


Abigail Jackson

Abigail Jackson is a second year Master’s student studying ecology and phylogeography of the nematode Scottnema lindsayae at Brigham Young University. She works at the McMurdo Dry Valleys LTER.

Adriane McDonald

Adriane McDonald is a second year PhD student in the Hofmann Lab in the EEMB Department, and works closely with the Santa Barbara Coastal LTER. Her research interests include evaluating the responses of marine invertebrate species approved for California aquaculture to multiple environmental stressors.

Emily Ortega

Emily Ortega is a PhD student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, where she studies chemical oceanography at the Northern Gulf of Alaska LTER. Emily has pursued every opportunity to practice science communication, including journalism classes and now this fellowship.

Isabela Lima Borges

Isabela Lima Borges is a PhD student at Michigan State University, where her research focuses on fragmented populations and is based at the Kellogg Biological Station LTER. Her communication drive stems from her experience in outreach, where she learned the power of stories in science education.

Jenna Zuckswert

Jenna Zuckswert is a PhD student at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. She studies the effects of nutrients on the forest at the Hubbard Brook LTER. Her love for science communication stems from Rachel Carson’s work and a desire to engage diverse audiences with science.

Katie Sperry

Katie Sperry is a PhD student at Northeastern University. She studies ecosystem diversity at the Plum Island LTER site. When Katie realized she could remember more from a single magazine article than any of the papers she had read as a student, she decided to make science communication a central part of her research career.

Molly Reichenborn

Molly Reichenborn is a PhD student at New Mexico State University who researches plant community response to herbicides at the Jornada Basin LTER. Her research focuses on supporting effective land stewardship, and the need to connect with landowners spurred a strong interest in communication and effective writing.

Tommy Shannon

Tommy Shannon is a graduate student at Florida International University, where he studies the effects of environmental change on salt marshes at the Florida Coastal Everglades LTER. Tommy found that art and writing were incredibly effective tools for engaging audiences in science, and he has continued to search for creative ways to present his own science to others.


Ezra Kottler

Catalina Mejia

Megan O’Hara

Tim Ohlert

Mareli Sanchez-Julia

Alina Spera

Angela Theodosopoulos


In 2020, the LTER supported three communications interns from UCSB’s Bren School of Environmental Science and Management.

  • Erin Winslow
  • Haley Dunleavy
  • Tasha Griffin