People

PROF. SONIA LASHER-TRAPP

I grew up in rural Southern Indiana. As a child I enjoyed watching thunderstorms but was also frightened by the prospect of a tornado hitting our house, especially during the night. At my parents’ urging (they were tired of being awakened in the middle of the night by my warnings that we should all retreat to the basement), I decided to learn more about these atmospheric phenomena.

I attended St. Louis University for my undergraduate education in atmospheric science, and afterward attended the University of Oklahoma for my M.S. and Ph.D. in meteorology. While in graduate school I satisfied some of my curiosity about thunderstorms and tornadoes, but discovered a new interest as well: cloud physics. I was lucky to experience both field work and numerical modeling during my doctoral research, and continue to enjoy both approaches.

After receiving my Ph.D., I took a post-doctoral appointment in the Advanced Study Program at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, CO, where I worked with some of the top cloud physicists in the field, and I continued these collaborations in residence at NCAR . In January 2003, I took a faculty position at Purdue University, where I built the Cloud Microphysics Research group.  In August 2014, it was time for a change, and I joined the faculty in the Dept. of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

I enjoy having a research group to discuss new ideas (and revisit old ones), and take great satisfaction in assisting students to become better scientists. I also have high hopes that we are producing results of great benefit to society, whether it be by leading to better precipitation forecasts, understanding regional and global climate change, or creating a future generation of atmospheric scientists capable of tacking the challenges that lie ahead.

HOLLY MALLINSON, PH.D. STUDENT

Holly joined the group in Fall 2016, and completed her M.S. in Summer 2018. Her research was a numerical investigation of the effects of phase changes of different microphysical hydrometeors in influencing upon thunderstorm cold pool development. Holly is now working on her Ph.D. in our group, using a pseudo-global warming technique to investigate how the severity of hailstorms might change in a future, warmer climate.

ENOCH JO, PH.D. STUDENT

Enoch joined the group in Fall 2018.  His research will entail the quantification of entrainment in thunderstorms and its effects upon precipitation efficiency, using the CM1 model run at high resolution on the Blue Waters supercomputer.

 

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Tobias Ross, M.S. STUDENT

Toby joined our group in Fall 2019. He is currently working on his M.S., analyzing the field data from the CACTI field campaign, and performing idealized numerical modeling of select cases, to understand the possible influences of cloud condensation nuclei upon convective cold pools over land.

 

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Sophie Orendorf, M.S. STUDENT

Sophie joined our group in Fall 2020. She is currently working on her M.S., performing a pseudo-global warming study of convective wind storms, to understand how they might change over the U.S. with a warmer climate.

 

ILLINOIS ALUMNI

LUKE ALLEN, M.S. 2020

Luke is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Geospatial Analytics at North Carolina State University.

ANTONIO ELIZONDO, B.S. 2020

Antonio is currently a graduate student in our department, working with Professor Sriver’s research group on Climate and Risk.

MARLEY MAJETIC, B.S. 2020

Marley is currently a graduate student in the Department of Meteorology at Penn. State University.

EMMA SCOTT, M.S. 2019

Emma is employed as a Climate Data Analyst at the North Carolina Institute for Climate Studies at North Carolina State University.

BRYAN ENGELSEN, M.S. 2018

Bryan is employed as an Air Quality Scientist at ERM environmental consulting in the Chicago area.

DANIEL MOSER, PH.D. 2017

Daniel is employed as a Software Engineer for L3 Harris Military Training in Arlington, TX.

SHAILENDRA KUMAR, POST-DOC FEB-DEC 2016

Shailendra is currently a research scientist at the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur, working in the group of Prof. Sachchida Nand Tripathi.

STEVEN NAEGELE, B.S. 2014

Steven is currently a graduate student in the Department of Meteorology at Penn. State University.

 

PURDUE ALUMNI

CECILLE VILLANUEVA, PH.D 2014

Cecille is currently employed in the National Weather Service in Puerto Rico.

ALEXANDRIA JOHNSON, PH.D 2014

Alex is currently an Assistant Professor of Practice and Research in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences at Purdue University.

COLIN TULLY, B.S. 2013 (M.S. UNIV. OF LEEDS 2014)

Colin is currently a graduate student at the University of Zurich.

KATHLEEN QUARDOKUS, M.S. 2010, (PH.D WESTERN MICHIGAN UNIV. 2014)

Kathy is on the faculty in the Department of Earth & Environment at Florida International University.

AMANDA SHEFFIELD, B.S. 2009, (M.S COLORADO STATE UNIV. 2011, PH.D. 2015)

Amanda is presently a postdoc at Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

DAN ARTHUR, M.S. 2009

Dan is currently employed as Data Manager and IT Specialist at USDA-ARS, State College, PA.

JENNIFER BEWLEY, PH.D. 2009

Jen is currently employed by AvMet Applications, an aviation consulting firm based in Reston, VA.

COLLEEN (HENRY) REICHE, PH.D. 2008

Colleen is currently employed by AvMet Applications, an aviation consulting firm based in Reston, VA.

JUSTIN STACHNIK, B.S. 2005, M. S. 2007, (PH.D TEXAS A&M UNIV. 2013)

Justin is currently on the faculty in the Department of Geography and Atmospheric Science, University of Kansas.

SARAH ANDERSON-BEREZNICKI, M.S. 2005, (PH.D PURDUE CIVIL ENGINEERING 2008)

Sarah is currently employed as an atmospheric engineer at Leidos IT.