I am a graduate student working with Dr. Inés Ibáñez at the University of Michigan's School for Environment and Sustainability. My work focuses on how climate change is affecting tree recruitment in  temperate forests in the Great Lakes region. In my work I combine ecological measurements such as survival and phenology with physiological measurements that include photosynthetic rates and drought responses in order to gain an in-depth understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the patterns we observe in nature.

Before coming to Ann Arbor for graduate school, I graduated with my BSc in Biology with a focus in ecology and a Minor in Philosophy from the University of Washington in 2012. In addition to a wide variety of engaging classwork, I had the pleasure of working as a field tech in Dr. Janneke Hille Ris Lambers' forest demography lab where I spent several summers up on Mt. Rainier. I also worked with Dr. Ailene Kane Ettinger on an urban forest recruitment project for my senior thesis. We explored how ivy removal and wood chip addition affect germination and survival of native conifer seedlings in Seattle's urban forests.

Following graduation I spent two years working as a paraprofessional at Islander Middle School in Mercer Island, WA, teaching math to 7th and 8th grade students. This was a very rewarding experience and solidified my decision that I want to teach as part of my career.  In 2014 I left my job at IMS and moved to Ann Arbor, MI where I began my dissertation. I continue to be fascinated by forest ecology and I am excited to explore climate change's effects on native temperate forest communities.


© 2019 Ben Lee