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May 14, 2021

Congratulations to our Spring and Summer 2021 graduates!

The department celebrated spring and summer graduates with a Zoom ceremony May 14. Advisers shared information about each graduate, and family and friends were able to attend.

We asked our graduating students about their plans following graduation and the most important thing they learned at CSU. Here are their responses.

Ali Akherati

“I am a postdoc at University of California, Davis.”

“I learned how to live, not just how to do science and how important other aspects of life are. Being successful is not just being good at your work but also how to be a useful person in different aspects in society. Having a good work-life balance makes you a better person and more successful. I got a new family, friends and life in Fort Collins.”

Jennie Bukowski

“I’m a postdoc with the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, working at NCAR with Daniel Swain and James Done researching spatially/temporally connected extreme precipitation events.”

“That science can and should be kind. After all, we’re humans first and scientists second.”

Jhordanne Jones

“I’m heading to a postdoctoral position at Purdue University to work with Dan Chavas’ group.”

“The most important thing I learned at CSU was that a strong, supportive community makes good science. I really appreciated being a part of the Atmos community and learned from so many experts and fellow students while here.”

Drew Koeritzer

“I am employed as a meteorologist for the National Weather Service at the Lubbock, TX forecast office.”

“The value of learning from and engaging with others. Teamwork and collaboration really are crucial to success!”

Michael Needham

“I am continuing on to the Ph.D. program, still in Dave Randall’s group.”

“The most important thing I learned is the value of building relationships, especially when you tend to be introverted.”

Casey Patrizio

“In September I am very excited to be starting a postdoc position at the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change (CMCC) in Bologna, Italy.”

“Among many important things I learned during my time at CSU was the value of balance in life (this is also still very much an ongoing process).”

Kate O’Dell

“I am starting a post-doc at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. in August.”

“I’ve learned so much at CSU! I think one of the most important lessons for me was to not be afraid to say, ‘I don’t know,’ and ask questions. Asking the right questions with the right people is how great research happens.”

Kristen Van Valkenburg

“Still at CSU through the summer and on the job hunt now!”

“Teamwork! Classes/homework are best accomplished with many minds working to solve problems. Research is also always a team effort, so I learned to ask for help when I needed it and tried to be there when others needed me.”

Photo collage: From left to right, top to bottom row, Ali Akherati, Jennie Bukowski, Jhordanne Jones, Drew Koeritzer, Michael Needham, Lance Niño, Kate O’Dell, Casey Patrizio and Kristen Van Valkenburg.

Spring 2021 Graduates

Ali Akherati Ph.D. Advisers: Shantanu Jathar/Jeff Pierce
Jennie Bukowski Ph.D. Adviser: Sue van den Heever
Adam Clayton* M.S. Adviser: Steven Rutledge
Drew Koeritzer M.S. Adviser: Chris Kummerow
Yoonjin Lee* Ph.D. Advisers: Chris Kummerow/Milija Zupanski
Alex Naegele* Ph.D. Adviser: David Randall
Michael Needham M.S. Adviser: David Randall

*Recognized in fall ceremony

Summer 2021 Graduates

Jhordanne Jones Ph.D. Adviser: Michael Bell
Lance Niño M.S. Adviser: Sonia Kreidenweis
Kate O’Dell Ph.D. Advisers: Jeff Pierce/Emily Fischer
Casey Patrizio Ph.D. Advisers: David Randall/David Thompson
Kristen Van Valkenburg M.S. Advisers: Steven Rutledge/Sue van den Heever