Annie Bourbonnais is leading the Marine Stable Isotope Biogeochemistry Laboratory at USC.  

Current members
Holly Westbrook

Holly graduated from University of Connecticut with a B.S. in Marine Science with a minor in Chemistry in May of 2017. After graduation, she began working in Dr. Julie Granger's lab as a research technician where she researched the δ  O to δ  N relationship during nitrate consumption in different aquatic environments, and maintained in situ equipment in a local cove, and assisted in sampling trips in the Pawcatuck River over the summer of 2017. She also participated in the  GO-SHIP line IO7N cruise, running closed cell alkalinity titrations and collecting samples for University of Miami RSMAS. During her undergraduate studies she participated in a SEA Semester, which was a transatlantic crossing focusing on climate change and the global carbon cycle, as well as an independent study about organic alkalinity in wetlands. Under Dr. Bourbonnais, her research will focus on nitrous oxide in the water column and sediment in the Arctic.



Julia Raab

Julia graduated from the Weihenstephan - Triesdorf University of Applied Sciences in August 2016 with a B.S. in Environmental Engineering and a minor in Environmental Management. During her studies, she worked as a research assistant in the Wadden Sea National Park on the island of Sylt in Germany.

She did an internship at the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, Germany, and subsequently completed her B.S. thesis in experimental ecology, investigating the phenotypic plasticity of two phytoplankton species under elevated pCO2. This work was published in Biology Letters in February 2017. During her 8-month assistantship in Dr. Matthiessen’s lab she acquired knowledge in phytoplankton growth experiments.

Julia graduated from GEOMAR and Kiel University with a M.S. in Biological Oceanography in May of 2019. In her master thesis she focused on the N2O-cycling in the Benguela Upwelling System between 5°S and 25°S in the lab of Prof. Hermann W. Bange.  Under the supervision of Prof. Bange and Dr. Damian L. Arévalo-Martínez at GEOMAR, Julia learned how to measure dissolved gases in discrete seawater samples with a chromatography-ECD/FID system and to visualize the calculated concentrations with Ocean Data View.

Julia gained experience on research vessels and worked as a public speaker on environmental outreach events organized by GEOMAR.

Her work as a Ph.D. student under Dr. Bourbonnais, starting in fall 2019, will focus on the effects of river plumes on biogeochemistry and primary production in Winyah Bay.

Darcy Perin

Darcy is an undergraduate student at the University of South Carolina, pursing a B.S in Marine Science with a minor in geography. She plans to apply to a graduate school in 2021, where she hopes to study chemical or biological oceanography. During her internship in the Bourbonnais lab, she will be introduced to different chemical methods to analyze nutrients and stable isotopes of nitrogen species in marine environments. 

Olivia Melissa Shugart

Melissa is an undergraduate student in the University of South Carolina Honor's College pursuing a double major in Chemistry and Spanish. After graduating in 2022, she plans to pursue her Ph.D. in chemical oceanography. In the summer of 2019, Melissa completed a 10-week research internship at Texas A&M University where she worked under Dr. Shari Yvon-Lewis studying the concentrations of nitrous oxide in the water column along the Texas-Louisiana continental shelf. Because of her prior experience with and interest in marine nitrous oxide, she will assist the Bourbonnais lab in analyzing nitrous oxide and stable nitrogen isotopes of samples taken from prior cruises.

Maggie Gaspar

Maggie Gaspar is an undergraduate student at University of South Carolina, currently pursuing her B.S. in Marine Science with a concentration in chemical oceanography. Coming to school with an Associates of Social Science degree, she already plans to begin an accelerated masters degree by her Spring 2021 semester. After studying abroad in the Galapagos Islands in May 2020, Maggie will be returning to the laboratory for the remainder of the summer to go on research cruises, help conduct research in local lakes, and analyze samples for graduate students. She is absolutely ecstatic to use this learning experience to begin a research project of her own.  

Maggie Gordon

Maggie is a sophomore undergraduate at the University of South Carolina majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology with a Spanish minor. She plans on attending graduate school for microbiology and pursuing a research career in environmental microbiology. Maggie is very excited to be working with the Bourbonnais lab!

Lab Alumni
Hunter Damron

Hunter is pursuing a B.S.C.S. with a double major in computer science and mathematics from the University of South Carolina Honors College. After graduating in 2021, he plans to enroll in a Ph.D. program for theoretical computer science or discrete mathematics. Hunter is currently an undergraduate researcher in the Autonomous Field Robotics Lab (AFRL) under Dr. Ioannis Rekleitis working on a hierarchical state estimation technique for an underwater robot. Because of his experience in robotics, he will help Dr. Bourbonnais install and calibrate an autosampler for use in her research.

©2020 by Bourbonnais Lab (last updated April 2020)