Megan Coffer




Awards and Recognition




I am an ORISE fellow at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Research and Development and a Ph.D. candidate at the Center for Geospatial Analytics at North Carolina State University. At the U.S. EPA, I work under the guidance of Dr. Blake Schaeffer. At NC State University, I am advised by Dr. Helena Mitasova.

I received my Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics with a minor in Statistics from Meredith College in 2015. During my junior and senior years at Meredith College, I worked as an undergraduate research assistant in the Department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Science at NC State University. Our research project used remotely operated weather radars to track thunderstorms in the Colorado foothills in an effort to develop a more informative model of thunderstorm structure. Upon graduation, I pursued my Master’s of Science in Atmoshperic Science from NC State University under the guidance of Dr. Erin Hestir. My Master’s thesis used micrometeorological flux tower data coupled with climate data and satellite remote sensing data to investigate variability in carbon dioxide exchange across Arctic wetlands. After completing my Master’s degree, I began as an ORISE fellow at the U.S. EPA. A year into my fellowship, I decided to also pursue my Ph.D. in Geospatial Analytics.

My research uses satellite remote sensing data to assess the status of cyanobacterial blooms in inland waterbodies across the continental United States. This research is part of the Cyanobacteria Assessment Network, or CyAN, which is an interagency research effort between the U.S. EPA, USGS, NASA, and NOAA. My contributions to this research project include analyzing the frequency of cyanobacterial blooms, quantifying their impacts on drinking water intakes, and assessing the regional timing of peak cyanobacterial blooms.

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