ES Students Honors Research

Environmental Studies majors with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.70 at the end of the January term of the junior year or with special department approval are eligible to apply for the Environmental Studies Honors Research Program.

Successful completion of the Honors Program will include an oral presentation at the Colby Undergraduate Research Symposium, a successful oral thesis defense, and an approved thesis as well as the completion of the required course work for the major. The student fulfilling these requirements will graduate “With Honors in Environmental Studies.” The decision whether or not the student will be approved to convert their fall semester seminar or independent study project to an honors project in the spring semester and continue in the ES Honors Program by enrolling in ES 484 will be made at the end of the first semester. In cases where requirements for Honors have not been fulfilled at the end of the spring semester, ES 484 (Honors Research) will revert to a graded ES 492 (Independent Study). See the ES Honors Requirement page for further information.

For more information on undergraduate research at Colby.

Colby Liberal Arts Symposium (CLAS)

The Honors Program students present their research during the annual undergraduate research symposium, CLAS (formerly the Undergraduate Research Symposium).

CLAS website

CLAS posters and presentations in Digital Commons @ Colby [link: ]

Past Honors and Senior Scholar Projects

The ES Department is proud of the research undertaken by our honors students. The faculty are committed to helping the students achieve the best research possible, from research design to final production.

You can access these thesis online via Digital Commons @ Colby

Fraser, Catherine (’19)
The Enbridge Line 3 Replacement Pipeline: Attitudes, Symbolism, and  Geography

King, Katherine (’19)
Factors Affecting African Elephant Group Size and Dynamics in Western  Makgadikgadi National Park, Botswana

Patodia, Aanavi (’19)
Using YPAR Methods to Improve Food Equity in the Alternative Education Program in Waterville, Maine

Senechal, Katie (’19)
Mapping Food Access in Waterville, Maine

Wu, Tiffany (’19)
Historical Patterns and Future Projections of Asian Elephant Habitat Suitability

Yu, Anna (’19)
Developing a Predictive and Dynamic Model of Moose-Vehicle Collisions in Maine

Hawkinson, Vivian F. (’18)
Developing generalizable spatial patterns of human-wildlife conflict

Kullberg, Alyssa T. (’18)
Presence and Potential Sources of Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Product Chemicals in Messalonskee Lake

Ravenelle, Jeremy P. (’18)
Waste Reduction in Public School Cafeterias through Sorting and Diversion: An Analysis of Three Southern Maine Schools

Wang, Chengyang (’18)
Stable Bromine Isotopic Signature of Bromoform from Enzymatic and Abiotic Formation Pathways and its Application in Identifying Sources of Environmental Bromoform in Damariscotta River

Zebrowski, Wesley (’18)
Biodiversity Conservation as an Adaptation Strategy in Response to Climatic and Economic Shifts: Species Stewardship in Sacred Forests and Smallholder Crop Fields in Eastern Africa

Zheng, Xinyi (’17)
Exploring spatial changes in Maine’s Lobster Fishery

Baker-Wacks, Elizabeth M. (’17)
Can community-based resource management conserve biodiversity?: A case study from Bhutan

Chmiel, Rebecca J. (’17)
Determination of ammonium isotope ratios with electrospray ionization mass spectrometry

Lewis, Robin C. (’17)
Outsider: Personal Essays about Nature, Conservation, and People

Batchelder, Jessica P. (’17)
Temporal changes in the larval Placopecten magellanicus population in a small-scale fishery closure area in coastal Maine

Marra, Madison T. (’17)
The Effects of Past Climate Anomalies on United States Atlantic Coast Fisheries

Serena Haver (’16)
Pharmaceutical and personal care products concentrations in the Belgrade Lakes: A possible threat to aquatic ecosystems and human health

Alexa Junker (’16)
Assessing LakeSmart: The Development and Effectiveness of a Lake Protection Program

Janice Liang (’16)
The Roles of Introduced Eucalyptus in the Conservation and Expansion of Ethiopian Orthodox Church Forests in the Northern Ethiopian Highlands

Samantha Lovell (’16)
Shifting Baselines of Iconic Marine Species in the Caribbean

Eda Reed (’16)
Endocrine-disrupting Chemicals in Wildlife: Perceptions Among Conservationists

Harriet Rothschild (’16)
Gloeotrichia echinulata and its effect on nitrogen cycling in the Belgrade Lakes, ME

Emily Walker (’16)
The historical ecology of Queensland’s Australian saltwater crocodile population  Maravilla Clemens (’16), The Chachi of Ecuador: A Clash of Cultures

Andrew Currier (’16)
Analyzing Tuberculosis Diagnosis and Treatment In Kasungu, Malawi

Jacob Wall (’16)
Missing the Trees for the Forest: The Socioecological Significance of Scattered Trees in Northern Ethiopian Cropland

Jeff Meltzer (’15)
Social Gardens: Cultivating a Child’s Nutritional Habits, Environmental Knowledge, and Sustainability Practices

Lia Schell (’14)
The Historical Ecology of Sharks in New England

Emily Arsenault (’14)
Macroinvertebrate Community Structure and Feeding Dynamics in Three Forested Headwater Streams in Central Maine

Becky Forgrave (’14)
The Impact of Dams on Nitrogen Cycling in the Messalonskee Stream

Theresa Petzoldt (’14)
The Effect of Azo Textile Dyes on Gross Primary Production and Community Respiration in an Artificial Environment

Taylor Witkin (’14)
The Role of Underutilized Fish in New England’s Seafood System

Grace O’Connor (’14)
Adaptive Co-management in the Face of Environmental Change: Invasive Green Crabs and the Soft-shell clam Fishery in Maine

Erin Love (’14)
The Relationships between Local Food and Food Security in Maine

Michael Stephens (’13)
Climate Change and Epizootic Shell Disease in American Lobsters: Is Maine’s Most Valuable Fishery Doomed?

Virginia Keesler (’13)
Conservation Easement Policies Across New England

Larissa Lee (’13)
Factors Influencing National Park Establishment: Cases to Inform the Maine North Woods

Kaitlyn Bernard (’13)
Metallic Mineral Mining in Maine

Sally Homes (’13)
Managing the Global Aquarium Trade

Daniel Homeier (’12)
Cameras, Satellites, and Surveys: A Multi-Platform Approach to Monitoring Lake Conservation Behavior

Anna Leavitt (’12)
From Pond to Pump: Microalgae as a Feedstock for Biodiesel

Yiyuan “Jasmine” Qin (’12)
Reintroduction of the South China Tiger: Lessons, Assessments, and Implications

Blair Braverman (’11)
The one that carries you away.  Environmental essays

Kimberly Bittler (’11)
Zooplankton of the Belgrade Lakes: The Influence of Top-Down and Bottom-Up forces in Family Abundance

Sophie Sarkar (’11)
Buffernomics: Assessing willingness to pay for lake conservation on North Pond and East Pond

Rachel Baron (’11)
Biomass Energy at Colby College

Michelle Russell (’11)
State Leadership in Safer Chemicals Policy: Lessons from California, Maine, Minnesota, and Washington

Ian McCullough (‘10)
The Impacts of Land Use and Development Patterns on Water Quality of the Belgrade Lakes

John Abbett (‘10)
Achieving Carbon Neutrality at Colby College through Carbon Offsets

Lindsay Driess (‘09).
Protecting Maine’s Mammals: A Model of Human Footprint and Biodiversity in the North Woods

Caitlin Dufraine (’09).
An Identification and Assessment of Human-Carnivore Conflict Hotspots and Large Carnivore Policy Implications in the United States

Patrick Roche (’09).
Learning the Lay of Their Land: Data Recording by Maine Land Trusts

Megan Saunders (‘09).
Factors Influencing Conservation Success or Failure in Tiger Range States

Charles Carroll (’08).
An Analysis of Carbon Sequestration Potential in Maine     Alaina Clark (’08).
Designing a Green Graduation at Colby College

Courtney Larson (’08).
Separating People and Wildlife: Zoning as a Conservation Strategy for Large Carnivores

Jamie O’Connell (’08).
Carbon Neutrality at Colby College Kerry Whittaker (’08).
Using Variable Stomatal Sensitivity to CO2 in Conifers to Reconstruct Ancient Atmospheres and Predict Future Implications of Climate Change

Katie Himmelmann (’07)
Developing a Tool to Assess Human Health Impacts of Purchasing.

Emilia Tjernström (’06)
“Be the Change You Wish to See: National Attitudes and Climate Change Policy”. A co-authored paper (with her mentor Tom Tietenberg) based on this project with the new title “Do differences in attitudes explain differences in national climate change polices?” has been accepted for publication in Ecological Economics in 2007.

Alexandra Jospe (’06)
Modeling Spatially Explicit Human-wildlife Conflict: GIS and Moose-vehicle Collisions in Maine.

Sarah Kelly (’06)
Energy Use Patterns and Potential Areas for Energy Conservation in Dorm Rooms at Colby College.

Hilary Langer (’06)
The Cost of Conservation: Payments for Environmental Services on the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica.

Jenna Morrison (’06)
Environmental Awareness of Waterville Junior High Students.

Jessica Beetz (’05)
The Role of Private Ownership in the Conservation of Exotic Species.

Brendan Carroll (’05)
The Transboundary Implications of Wolf Reintroduction and Recovery in Maine

Allison Stewart (’05)
The Forest Service’s Quest for Power and Money and its Implications for the American Public

Kellie Phelan (’04)
Estimating the Impact of State Policy Incentives on Wind Power Development.

Catherine S. Benson (’02)
Local Participation as a Determinant of Success in World Bank   Environmental Projects in Africa: What is the Evidence?

Jacob A. Mentlik (’02)
The Private Forest Periphery: Industrial Colonization of the Maine Woods

Sharon K. Lee (’02)
The Impact of Socio-Economic Status on Hazardous Waste Cleanup in Maine

Katie Wasik (’01)
Corporate Interests and International Environmental Negotiations:   The Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change

Johanna Reardon (’00)
Is Radical Environmental Activism Effective: A Look At Forestry Protests in the United States.

Abby Campbell (’00)
Marketable Permit Systems: Is there a Recipe for Success?

Amanda Carucci (’00)
Analysis of Environmental Effects of Economic Sanctions though the   Cuban Experience.