I entered the PhD program at the University of Arizona in the fall of 2012 and began working with my adviser, Dr. Jianjun Yin. Through Department of Geosciences, I intend to receive my doctorate in the field of climatology and climate modeling as well as a minor in Global Change.
Rising sea levels are regarded as one of the major effects of global climate change. The potential impacts of sea level rise will undoubtedly be felt by ecosystems, development, economies, and the human population. Of particular vulnerability, is the Northeast Coast of the United States. Here, cities like Boston, New York, and Washington D.C. are experiencing sea level rise rate three to four times the global average. Previous thought attributed this regional pattern to land subsidence resulting from the last ice age. However, my research demonstrates that this susceptible area for sea level rise is induced by changes in the ocean. Specifically, decreasing strength of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation and northward migration of the Gulf Stream better explain the sea level patterns along the coast. These ocean dynamics are driven by changes in the climate system and therefore must be monitored moving forward as oceans warm from global warming and freshen with land ice melt.