Student Stories

Featured: Joel Bostic of Appalachian Laboratory

Get to know Joel and his research.

3 questions for Joel

What are you researching? I am interested in the sources of nitrate pollution coming into the Chesapeake Bay from upland watersheds. My advisors and I are measuring how much of the nitrate transported in streams, and eventually to the bay, comes from atmospheric deposition (in the rain) versus terrestrial sources (fertilizer and microbial sources). We also are interested to see if different type of land-uses—such as urban, agricultural, and forested land—have an impact on the proportion of atmospheric versus terrestrial nitrate in stream samples.

Why UMCES? After attending a large research university for a master’s degree, the smaller student and faculty population of Appalachian Laboratory was enticing. The smaller population makes for a great sense of community amongst the graduate students and there is immediate access to faculty members for questions or potential collaborations. Despite its size, the Appalachian Laboratory still maintains state-of-the-art facilities, including the capability for unique stable isotope analysis that my project requires.

What are your future plans? My future plans are to teach at a university. I enjoyed my experience at a smaller undergraduate school (Western Carolina University) and would like to become a professor at a similarly sized school.

Read Joel Bostic's full Q&A to learn more about him and his time at UMCES.