Hello to all of you out there, and welcome back to my blog. I’m thrilled to return to Mosaics for my second season and to start a brand new project at Mammoth Cave National Park, KY. Before I get into it, let me just give you a recap of what I’ve been up to.

As you may know, my project in 2018 dealt with the geochronology and morphology of Jewel Cave National Monument. The specific mechanisms behind how the cave formed is still hazy, and the work I did was just one part of a multi-faceted approach toward piecing the puzzle. If you’re new or would like a refresher, I invite you to go back and read my posts from 2018.

A totally candid shot of me taking a strike and dip of a limestone bed at Jewel Cave. Absolutely not taken after the fact, trust me.

Last summer, I interned for the USDA National Soil Erosion Research Lab in West Lafayette, IN. This facility works in conjunction with Purdue University to conduct all sorts of agricultural research pertaining to soils and erosion. I was given autonomy on creating and running my own studies, so long as they helped the lead scientist’s query into the use of charred organic matter (think charcoal) to filter out point-source and nonpoint-source pollutants. I also helped out the staff and grad students with research they were working on. 

Here I am using a caliper to measure changes in sand surface elevations for an erosion-deposition project at NSERL in 2019.

Fast forward to now: I’ve been brought on as an Air Quality intern at Mammoth Cave National Park. It’ll be my job to monitor cave climate and radon concentrations. It’s a task that is done almost daily year-round, so there’ll be tons of data to process. This is definitely new for me, but I believe the knowledge I’ve gained via working in karst landscapes will help me immensely. Aside from air quality monitoring, there’ll plenty of adjacent duties to perform as well, so I’ll keep you posted on what those will be. 

I hope you’ll join me on my journey ahead. Let’s begin.


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