I am an Environmental Scientist with an expertise and passion for plastic pollution. I graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Sciences from the University of Salamanca (Spain) in 2014. I then gained my MSc in Wildlife Management and Conservation from Reading University (UK) in 2015. My MSc thesis focused on the trophic transfer of microplastics in the food chain, from seaweeds to marine amphipods. In 2017, I started an EPA-funded PhD in Environmental Sciences at the UCC Plant Science and Ecotoxicology Department looking at the impacts of microplastics in the freshwater environment. During my PhD, I was invited as a guest lecturer at University Politécnica of Madrid in 2019 and University of Salamanca in 2018. I also mentored a winning BT Young Scientist microplastic project in the Category Junior Individual, Ecology in 2018. My PhD thesis entitled “Impacts, Fate and Trophic Transfer of Microplastics in the Freshwater Environment” was submitted to UCC in the summer of 2020 and I was awarded my PhD later that year.
In 2019 I successfully obtained funding for a three-year Postdoctoral Fellowship (2020-2023). I am currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at UCC Marine Geosciences Research Team, funded by the Marine Institute. This new and exciting project aims at investigating the presence of microplastics in cold-water coral habitats. In addition to this, I am or have been working on side projects funded by industry and non-for profit organisations on the areas of biodegradable plastics, microlitter on beaches and citizen science and the economical and ecological feasibility of ocean clean-ups.
Apart from my academic career, I have been lucky enough to be part of conservation projects overseas: a loggerhead turtle conservation project (Bios.cv, Cape Verde, 2014) and green turtle and plastic pollution projects (Ecology Project International, Galapagos Islands, 2016).
Recently in my free time I learned how to sew and I loved it so I have opened a small business for my cotton (plastic free!) floral accessories 🙂 you can check it out by clicking here.