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Lab Director

Dr. Erik Johanson  

Dr. Erik Johanson  

Assistant  Professor
Department of Geosciences

E-mail: ejohanson@fau.edu


Ph.D. University of Tennessee, Geography   

Research Interests: Reconstructing past environments & environmental change;  Human-environment interaction across the Holocene;  Paleoclimatology;  Environmental archaeology;  Vegetation and fire histories; Climate change; Restoration

Dr. Erik Joahnson's Faculty Page


Current Graduate Students


Taber Friedel



Taber Friedel

Ph.D. Student
Graduate Teaching Assistant
E-mail: tfriedel2018@fau.edu

Background: BS in Geology (University of Florida) 2017

Research: Paleoenvironmental change, paleoclimatology, palynology, and limnology. Reconstructing paleoclimate records, their variability, and environmental change over time through proxy analysis of sediments. Specifically, looking at climate trends during the late Holocene in the Neotropics to determine how people existed within their environment and reacted to change.






Andres Garzon-Oechsle

Ph.D. Student
Graduate Teaching Assistant
E-mail: agarzonoechs2014@fau.edu

Background: MA in Anthropology (Florida Atlantic University) 2018; BA in Anthropology (Indiana University) 2007

Research: Ancient settlement pattern analysis and landscape use of people in 
pre-contact coastal Ecuador.  More specifically, the focus of my research is the utilization of remote sensing technologies, including LiDAR,  along with GIS for the purposes of mapping and conducting spatial analysis of the surface modifications under the canopy of the cloud forest of the Pajan mountains of Manabí.  My goal is to understand the extent and organization of Manteño settlements, the last culture that thrived in the region before Spanish colonialism.



Anita Field



Anita Field

M.S. Student in Environmental Science Program
E-mail: afield2022@fau.edu  
  Background:  BS in Environmental Science & Policy and International Business Management (Lynn University) 2022





Graham Morrison-Plumley

M.S. Student in Geosciences
E-mail: gmorrisonplu2022@fau.edu 


Research: Microplastics in South Florida


Past Graduate Students

Kathryn Swick




Kathryn Swick

M.S. Student (2023)


Background: BS in Biology (Palm Beach Atlantic University) 2011

Research: Environmental change in the Everglades with a focus on anthropogenic influences in relation to sediment characteristics, vegetation health, and fire activity. Research methods include multiproxy analysis of core sediments including LOI, charcoal analysis, and peat humification. Remote sensing techniques are applied to monitor vegetation health through time.

Keywords: Limnology, Multiproxy Analysis, Peat Humification, Fire History, Remote Sensing 



Caroline Richardson




Caroline Richardson

M.S. Student - Environmental Science Program (2023)


Background: BA in Environmental Studies with a minor in Geography (The University of North Carolina at Charlotte) 2017


 Madeleine Bitting




Madeleine Bitting

M.S. Student (2021)


Background: BS in Biology (Florida Institute of Technology) 2019

Research: Paleoecology, biology, GIS mapping, paleoclimate reconstruction, limnology, and conservation. More specifically, my research involves fossil diatom analysis of sediment cores to produce a chronology of anthropogenic and climatic alterations to the landscape surrounding a high elevation lake in Costa Rica. Radiocarbon dating and other proxies including pollen and isotopic analysis of a 4200 year sediment record indicate the transition from nomadic hunter gatherer societies to a civilization supported by maize agriculture beginning ca. 3360 cal yr BP (~1400 BC) in this region. These and other proxies also reveal trends in climate, dominant plant taxa, fire activity, and water quality, which together provide a localized and integrated history of human interaction with the environment.



Skylar Hooler



Skylar Hooler

M.S. Student (2021)




Background: BS in Biology (Florida Atlantic University)

Research: Hydrology



Monty Watson




D.S. Monty Watson, MPA, LEP

M.S. Student (2020)



Background: MS in Geology / Geosciences (Florida Atlantic University) 2020; MPA in Environmental Policy (Florida Gulf Coast University) 2011; BA in Anthropology (University of South Florida) 2003