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Dr. Michelle Wong, PI (she/her/hers)

I am currently an assistant professor in the Yale EEB department. Previously, I was a postdoctoral scientist working with Dr. Sarah Batterman at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem StudiesI did my PhD in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Cornell University, advised by Dr. Robert Howarth. There, I studied the interactions of nutrients and fire on nitrogen fixation in the southeastern Amazon in collaboration with scientists from IPAM and the Woodwell Climate Research Center at Tanguro Ranch in Mato Grosso, Brazil. I spent a semester through the NSF GROW program at the University of Brasilia with Dr. Mercedes Bustamante's lab group. At Cornell, I was an active member of the biogeochemistry student group, an IGERT trainee, a member of NextGen, and a fellow at the Atkinson Center for Sustainability. I was also advised by Lou Derry, Natalie Mahowald, and Tim Fahey. Prior to graduate school, I worked as an environmental scientist at the Department of Pesticide Regulation under the Cal/EPA, and as a lab and field technician in Dr. Whendee Silver’s lab at U.C. Berkeley, where I also obtained my B.A. and B.S. I grew up in Sacramento, CA and didn’t always know that I wanted to be a scientist. You can read more about my journey here.


Dr. Mareli Sanchez Julia, Hutchinson postdoctoral scholar (she/her/hers)

I am interested in understanding forest composition, function, and regeneration from a belowground perspective. For example, how plants differentially acquire and use soil-derived nutrients, how flexible and abiotically-mediated is plant carbon allocation to root fungal symbionts (arbuscular and ectomycorrhizal fungi), and how plant-fungal interactions impact plant species composition across soil fertility gradients. As a postdoc, I plan to study plant species capable of establishing dual mycorrhizal symbioses to understand the ecosystem-level implications of the EM and AM functional categories. I received a PhD from Tulane University, where I studied the community ecology of endophytes and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi associated with tropical trees, and received a B.S. from Wofford College, where I majored in Biology and Environmental Studies. I am originally from San Juan, Puerto Rico.  


Dr. Guopeng Liang, Brown postdoctoral scholar (he/him/his)

My research interests focus on the effects of environmental change (e.g. warming, drought, and nitrogen deposition) and agricultural management (e.g. tillage and fertilization) on soil carbon cycling and plant productivity in terrestrial ecosystems. I am currently studying the roles of soil fertility in tree mortality and productivity and the effects of nutrient addition on plant productivity and soil carbon cycling.

Personal website:


Alika Ting, undergraduate researcher (she/her/hers)

I am an incoming senior majoring in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Yale. My research focus is on the interactions between fertilization and root exudate production in white oaks, and I am generally interested in soil science, ecology, and agriculture.


Nirjhar Kabery, affiliate researcher (she/her/hers)

I am currently a Yale affiliate interested in pursuing graduate education in ecosystem ecology. I am interested in learning about biogeochemistry, processes and dynamics of terrestrial ecosystems.

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