Ph.D. Graduates

Amy Alstad – Land Protection Associate, Driftless Area Land Conservancy

I am a former graduate student in the Damschen lab.  My Ph.D. research Amy2013.jpginvestigated long-term changes in the plant communities in Wisconsin prairie remnants.  I am interested in resampling prairie sites first studied by John Curtis in the 1950s, and comparing the past and present plant communities to ask questions about the effects of landscape context, climate change, and plant functional traits.  My aim with this research includes both providing answers to open questions in ecological theory, as well as generating results with tangible conservation and restoration applications.

Jesse Miller – Postdoc at University of California-Davisjessemiller

I am an ecologist with research interests at the confluence of community ecology, landscape ecology, and ecological restoration. I am currently a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California-Davis, where I am studying effects of fire severity on plant communities and post-fire restoration in Hugh Safford’s lab. I completed my Ph.D. in Ellen Damschen’s lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in May 2016, where I studied plant communities in glades (shallow soil grasslands) in the Ozarks of Arkansas and Missouri. Before graduate school I worked for several years as a field botanist, surveying for rare plant surveys on federal land and conducting ecological studies for academic research labs. I have also taught botany and biology classes in several settings over the years, and I greatly enjoy leading field classes and helping people discover plants and lichens and the stories they tell.