A leading cause of global premature deaths are exposures to ozone and particulate matter (PM). PM alone is responsible for 3.7-4.8 million premature deaths worldwide. PM is also an important atmospheric radiative forcer and plays a critical role in our understanding of the impacts of climate change. Tackling problems of air pollution mortality and climate change are the global public health issues that motivate my research. In my research I focus on understanding how the atmosphere can change the formation processes of ozone and PM, and its connection to human health. Through this research I have increased our scientific knowledge in these areas and produced new insights through air quality models (AQMs), field studies, laboratory experiments, and the development of a patented novel in vitro technology.
A better understanding of the atmosphere gives us the knowledge to improve the tools and methods that policy makers use to make effective control strategies to clean the air above our dirtiest cities. What excites me most about my research is that I am doing something that makes a real impact on society. Millions of people in the world breathe danerously polluted air. Through my work, I am able to provide scientific advice to policy makers who make the decisions that can improve our quality of life.
I am also director of the Master of Science in Environmental Engineering program where we offer a one or two year program that provides students with the vital skills and training in air quality and sustainable water resources needed to solve today’s environmental engineering and public health problems.
I am a Carolina First advocate and work on retention programs as a mentor for the Lookout Scholars and the Finish Line Program. I also serve as advisor to the Environmental Sciences & Engineering Student Organization.