The Disaster Research Center

DRC Graduate Students

Disaster Science & Management,  PhD Candidate rpburke@udel.edu

Ryan Burke
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
rpburke@udel.edu

Bio

Ryan Burke is currently a Dissertation Fellow and an instructor in the School of Public Policy and Administration at the University of Delaware. He successfully defended his dissertation on February 17, 2015 and will be graduating with his Ph.D. this May. Before starting his Ph.D., he was a captain and logistics officer in the U.S. Marine Corps where he served as a landing support platoon commander, operations officer, and company commander at Camp Lejeune, NC. He then served as the Deputy Marine Officer Instructor for the Philadelphia Naval ROTC Consortium at the University of Pennsylvania. After leaving the Marines, he worked as a Senior Consultant and Logistics Analyst for Booz Allen Hamilton supporting several Department of Defense projects both in the Pentagon and aboard Marine Corps Base at Quantico, VA. Ryan attended Penn State University on a NROTC scholarship, graduating with a degree in crime, law, and justice, and a minor in military studies. He also holds a master of science degree in homeland security from Saint Joseph’s University.

Disaster Science & Management, MS Candidate acario@udel.edu

Anthony Cario
Disaster Science & Management
M.S. Student
acario@udel.edu

Bio

Anthony Cario is working to complete his MS degree in Disaster Science and Management with a thesis topic on, “Risk Communication in Local Television News.”  He has been with the DRC since 2012 working in a number of roles gathering, managing, and analyzing both qualitative and quantitative data. Previous subject matter he worked on includes next generation warning systems, insurance and mitigation decision making, and post tornado recovery.  Some of his research interests include warnings, risk perception, the role of media, and climate change.  Also of note, he prides himself on carrying all the groceries from car to house in one trip.

Alex Greer

Alex Greer
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
agreer@udel.edu

Bio

Alex received his B.S. in Sociology and Geology from East Tennessee State University in 2010, graduating Magna Cum Laude with Outstanding Honors in Sociology. While pursuing his M.S. in Disaster Science and Management and working as a research assistant at the Disaster Research Center, Alex developed a thesis exploring the relationship between issue framing and oil spill policy and was recognized as a University Graduate Fellow. Alex’s dissertation is funded by the Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation (CAIT) at Rutgers University through the University Transportation Center Program (funded by the US Department of Transportation) and investigates household residential decision-making following disasters and the role infrastructure plays in this process. His research interests include disaster recovery, risk perception, oil spill policy, and issue framing.

 Mei Johnson

Mei Johnson
Disaster Science & Management
M.S. Student
mjohn@udel.edu

 Hans Louis-Charles

Hans Louis-Charles
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
hanslc@udel.edu

 Valerie Marlowe

Valerie Marlowe
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
marlowev@udel.edu

Bio

Valerie Marlowe is a doctoral student in the Disaster Science and Management program at the University of Delaware.  Valerie holds a Master’s degree in Leadership and Organizational Performance from Vanderbilt University, and prior to beginning academic studies at the University of Delaware worked for more than 10 years in the nonprofit sector, including disaster response and volunteer management work with the American Red Cross.  Valerie’s research interests include organizations, sensemaking, organizational culture, and cultural heritage protection in the disaster context.

 

V. Nuno Martins
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
nmartins@udel.edu

Bio

V. Nuno Martins is a Ph.D. candidate in the Disaster Science & Management program and a Graduate Research Assistant at the Disaster Research Center. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Physical Geography (University of Lisbon) and a master’s degree in GIS & Science (New University of Lisbon). Before starting his Ph.D. program, Nuno worked 4 years at the Azores University (Portugal) on projects related with disaster risk governance and management. He is currently working on the study “Community Resilience Index – Promoting Community Resilience in New York City after Hurricane Sandy: A Model-based Approach” which is funded by the US Department of Health and Human Services. Nuno has several peer-reviewed publications and has participated in international conferences. His research interests include: social vulnerability assessment, sociocultural adaptations to disasters, disaster preparedness, community- based disaster management, and GIS-based modeling.

 Maggie Nelan

Maggie Nelan
Sociology & Criminal Justice
Ph.D. Student
mnelan@udel.edu

Bio

Maggie is currently a doctoral student in Sociology.  She received her M.A. in Sociology at the University of Texas at El Paso in 2011.  Following a volunteer trip to Haiti in May 2010, Maggie’s thesis research focused on the health and community relationships of disaster volunteers in Haiti following the January 2010 earthquake.  In addition to her research in disasters she has been an active disaster response volunteer with several organizations, participating in both international and domestic disaster events.  Her current research focuses on material convergence following disaster events and the donations supply chain.  Maggie’s other research interests are environmental sociology and deviance.

 Sam Penta

Sam Penta
Sociology & Criminal Justice
Ph.D. Student
spenta@udel.edu

Bio

Samantha Penta is a doctoral student in sociology.  She earned a Master of Arts in sociology at the University of Delaware.  Her thesis examined organizational cultures of preparedness in the long term care industry.  More recently, her work has focused on material convergence and motivations for participating in disaster relief.  Her research interests include medicine, health, and decision-making in the disaster context.

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 Cynthia Rivas
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
crivas@udel.edu

Bio

Cynthia H. Rivas is a doctoral student in Disaster Science & Management at the University of Delaware. She holds a Master’s of Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning and a Bachelor of Science in Conservation & Resource Studies and Society & Environment from University of California, Berkeley. Her previous work has focused on spatial analysis (GIS) in regards to environmental planning. Specifically using remotely sensed data such as Near Infrared and Lidar to identify high risk fire communities and classification of vegetation. Current interest are many but can be somewhat narrowed down to risk assessment, GIS, risk analysis and community planning.

 Dong Wang

Dong Wang
Civil Engineering
Ph.D. Student
derawang@udel.edu

Bio

Dong Wang is a Ph.D. student majoring in Civil Engineering at the University of Delaware. After completing her B.S.E. and M.S. from Dalian University of Technology in China, Dong started her Ph.D. program from February 2015. She is now working with Prof. Davidson, and her research interest is about interdisciplinary approach to modeling multiple stakeholder decision-making to reduce regional natural disaster risk. Dong Wang is funded by a research grant from the National Science Foundation.

 Kun Yang

Kun Yang
Civil Engineering
Ph.D. Student
kunyang@udel.edu

Bio

Kun Yang obtained his Bachelor degree in Automation at Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST) in China, 2014, and came to the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at University of Delaware the following fall as a Ph.D. student. His research interest is about hurricane evacuation and sheltering, and his advisor is Professor Davidson. Kun Yang is funded by a research grant from the National Science Foundation.

 Daryl Yoder-Bontrager

Daryl Yoder-Bontrager
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
dyb@udel.edu

Bio

Daryl Yoder-Bontrager is a doctoral student in the Disaster Science and Management program at the University of Delaware. Prior to beginning academic studies he worked for over 20 years in disaster and community development work with Mennonite Central Committee in its Latin America programs, including leading the organization’s response to Hurricane Mitch in Central America and the 2010 Haiti earthquake. He is currently collaborating on a multi-disciplinary National Science Foundation funded study focused on improving tornado warning methods. Yoder-Bontrager’s research interests include international disaster management, NGO coordination, the intersection of disaster and development, and the effect of time and space on hazard response.

Not Pictured:

Sarah Gregory
Disaster Science & Management
Ph.D. Student
athena@udel.edu