Welcome to the online portfolio of
An Interdisciplinary Approach
Cielo is an imaginative engineer focused on addressing environmental injustice across the world. Her research is focused on addressing social vulnerability to climate change, flood risk, pollution, and drought. Her focus is on stormwater runoff, pollutant transport, and modeling vulnerability. Cielo is also interested in pollutant transport phenomena during wildfires and combined sewer overflow events.
Cielo is a doctoral student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry with a minor in Environmental Studies with distinction in May 2019. When she is not in the lab, Cielo enjoys being an active leader in the National Society of Black Engineers and tutoring high school students. Outside of the lab Cielo loves to travel! Some recent trips have included the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, and San Diego.
SOCIAL VULNERABILITY AND HYDROLOGICAL RISK
Created a high-resolution model that delineated hydrological risk using FEMA Q3 flood data in ArcMaps. Delineated flood hazard areas by social risk and created a vulnerability assessment of environmental justice communities. This project was used to address policy issues in Massachusetts!
AGUA LIMPIA: WATER DEGRADATION IN ECUADOR
Designed an interactive exhibit on the issues surrounding water quality degradation in Napo, Ecuador. This exhibit, which was designed to educate rural farmers with limited literacy, used a hands-on visual approach to teach students about detecting, treating, and managing water contamination in their village.
FLUORESCENT COLORANTS & BIOMARKER TECHNOLOGY
Created a fluorescently quenched nanozeolite framework for use in heavy metal identification in human lung cell fibroblasts. This project was completed at the Zurich University of Applied Life Sciences as a Bachelors Thesis in Applied Chemistry. This project combined advanced analytical chemistry techniques with applied molecular biology research.
ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP AND STORMWATER EDUCATION
Performed quantitative analysis of water quality in central Massachusetts to assess phosphorous, nitrogen, and bacterial contamination. Used this preliminary data to organize city-wide compliance with the MS4 permit and Massachusetts EPA by creating an educational solution to mitigate stormwater pollution in Fitchburg. The product being a student workbook, educator handbook, and stormwater curriculum that meets state educational frameworks.
SENIOR LABORATORY ANIMAL ATTENDANT
July 2015 - Present
Monitored and assessed the daily health of several species of mice, rats, and frogs through qualitative assessment and post-mortem surgery. Ensured laboratory health and safety compliance with OSHA and IACUC.
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH ASSISTANT, ARGUELLO LABORATORY
Analyzed the pathway in which CopA proteins exit the cell in the presence of heavy metals. Performed protein purification, genetic recombination, and protein identification through a variety of molecular biology techniques.
LABORATORY MANAGER, O’BRIEN LABORATORY
January 2016- May 2018
Assessed the health outcomes associated with microaggressions in minority populations. Oversaw and managed all aspects of the laboratory including writing protocols, managing student research assistants, and ordering laboratory equipment.
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH ASSISTANT, OLSEN LABORATORY
January 2017-September 2017
Conducted research of phospholipids in C. elegans using molecular biology and biochemical techniques. Managed genetic stocks of C. elegans using a variety of plating and cultivation techniques.