I’ve always been interested in understanding how the world works. Initially, this sparked an interest in physics, and for most of high school, and the first couple years of my undergraduate degree (which I completed at the University of Melbourne), physics is what I focused on. That is until I happened to take an Earth science class. Just like that, a new passion emerged. A short time later I swapped my major to climate and weather and learned as much about the Earth system as I could: past climates, atmospheric dynamics, oceanography, and some meteorology. Shortly after, I had a conversation with my would-be Masters supervisor about possible postgraduate routes, and from that point, my heart was set on studying geography. During my Masters, I took classes on environmental management and geomorphology, and continued studying the Earth’s past. This culminated in my first foray into research, in which I studied the end of an ice age some 800,000 years ago using lake sediments from central Italy. Whatever reservations I had about aiming for a research career quickly dissipated, and so I applied for a PhD.
When looking for a project, I knew I wanted to study the Earth’s past, but I also wanted my work to relate to present (or near-future) problems. When I heard about an opportunity to study the East Antarctic Ice Sheet at Monash over Twitter, I knew immediately that’s what I wanted to do, and now here I am, excited to delve into the palaeo history of the Denman Glacier, and help secure Antarctica’s environmental future.
I suppose it was always meant to be: ever since spending a few years in Amsterdam when I was young, I’ve been very fond of the cold!