News & Events


The department welcomes three new tenure–track faculty in 2016:

Dr. Peleg Kremer, Assistant Professor, GIS, Mendel G67E

Dr. Kabindra Shakya, Assistant Professor, Environmental Science, Mendel G67I

Dr. Stephen Strader, Assistant Professor, Geography, Mendel G65F

Villanova Undergraduate Research Fellowship Awards were given to three GEV students for summer 2016!

Devin Smith, Environmental Science, ‘17

Gina Talamo, Environmental Science, ‘18

Mikala Jordan, Environmental Science, ‘18


On 26 January 2017, the Department of Geography and the Environment along with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences celebrated the official launch of the new Master of Science in Environmental Science program.  The event was held in the Villanova Room and featured remarks from Dr. Adele Lindenmeyr, Dean of the College, and Father M. Peter Donohue, the University President.  The Keynote Address was delivered my Ms. Christine Knapp, ’01 CLAS, who is currently the Director of Sustainability for the City of Philadelphia.  The event was attended by about 150 students, faculty, and friends of the Department.  The inaugural class for the new program is shown in the picture above: (from left to right) Elise Rodriguez, Mary Zawatski, Teresa Jarvis, Jennifer Ames, Matthew Ortynsky, Dr. Francis A. Galgano (Department Chair), Connor Sullivan, Father Peter Donohue (University President), Dr. Adele Lindenmeyr (Dean of the College), Alec Davis, Ms. Christine Knapp, Laura Korman, Amber Carter, Dr. Lisa J. Rodrigues (Graduate Program Director), and Victoria Ames).

Devin Smith (’17, Environmental Science), presented her research at the Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America (in Denver Colorado) and won the outstanding student poster award at the conference.  The GSA is one of the major international conferences in the natural and physical sciences with about 15,000 attendees.  Devin competed against undergraduate and graduate students in the Environmental and Engineering Division Geology Student Research Competition.  Devin’s poster, titled Evaluating the Relationship Among Land Use Change, Sediment and Nutrient Export, with Nearshore Coral Health in Southwestern Puerto Rico, was funded (in part) this summer as a VURF.  She did the fieldwork in Puerto Rico with Drs. Steve Goldsmith and Lisa Rodrigues in July and August. Devin is completing a senior thesis under the direction of Dr. Steve Goldsmith’s student.


Recent Faculty Publications

Kremer.  P., Hamstead Z., McPhearson T., Frantzenkaki, N., et al. 2016.  Key research–based insights for the future of urban ecosystem services research.  Society and Ecology 21 (2): 29.

Wieder, R. K., Vile, M., Albright, C., Scott, K., Vitt, D., Quinn, J., and Burke–Scoll, M. 2016.  Effects of altered atmospheric nutrient deposition from Alberta oil sands development on Sphagnum fuscum growth and C, N and S accumulation in peat.  Biogeochemistry 129 (1): 1–19.

Kerns, P. J., Weston, N. B., Bowen, J. L., Zivkovic, T., and Vile, M. V. 2016.  Tidal Freshwater Marshes Harbor Phylogenetically Unique Clades of Sulfate Reducers That Are Resistant to Climate-Change-Induced Salinity Intrusion.  Estuaries and Coasts, 1-11.

Galgano, F. A., 2016.  Environmental Security and Trans-Boundary Water Resources, pp 169–191.  In Military Geosciences and Desert Warfare, McDonald, Eric, Bullard, Thomas (Eds.).  New York: Springer-Verlag, 321 pp. [978-1-4939-3427-0].

Harmon, R.S., Worner, G., Goldsmith, S.T., Harmon, B.A., Gardner, C.B., Lyons, W.B., Ogden, F.L., Pribil, M.J., Long, D.T., Kern, Z., and Forizs, I., 2016, Riverine geochemistry of Panama: Silicate weathering and CO2 consumption in a mountainous tropical setting, Geological Society of America Bulletin, doi: 10.1130/B31388.1.

Kremer P., Hamstead Z., Hasse D., McPhearson T., Frantzeskaki N et al. (2016). Key research-based insights for the future of urban ecosystem services research. Ecology and Society 21(2):29.

Kremer P., Hamstead Z., McPhearson T. (2016). The Value of Urban Ecosystem Services: A Spatially Explicit Multicriteria Analysis of Landscape Scale Valuation Scenarios in NYC. Environmental Science & Policy. 62:57-68

Gittleman, M., Farmer, C. J. Q., Kremer, P., & McPhearson, T. (2016). Estimating stormwater runoff for community gardens in New York City. Urban Ecosystems, 5.

Shakya, K.M., Noyes, A., Kallin, R., Peltier, R.E. (2016). Evaluating the efficacy of cloth facemasks in reducing particulate matter exposure. Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology. DOI: 10.1038/jes.2016.42

Shakya,  K.M., Rupakheti, M., Aryal, K., Peltier, R.E. (2016). Respiratory effects of high levels of particulate exposure in a cohort of traffic police in Kathmandu, Nepal. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 58(6): 218-225.

Other News

Grant Award: Drs. Rodrigues and Steven Goldsmith, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation ($125,454) for a two–year project to quantify the impacts of land use change on nearshore coral reefs. 

Grant Award: Dr. Nathaniel Weston is the lead principal investigator for a grant ($665,660) awarded by the NSF in June 2016, which includes co–PIs James Morris (University of South Carolina), Scott Neubauer (Virginia Commonwealth University), and Chris Craft (Indiana University). 

Grant Award: Dr. Nathaniel Weston is co-principal investigator on the National Science Foundation funded Plum Island Ecosystems Long Term Ecological Research (PIE-LTER) grant “Dynamics of coastal ecosystems in a region of rapid climate change, sea-level rise, and human impacts” awarded in August 2016, which includes co–PIs Anne Giblin, Linda Deegan, Joseph Vallino (Marine Biological Laboratory) and Wilfred Wollheim (University of New Hampshire). 

Grant Award: Dr. Steven Goldsmith is a co-principal investigator on a Pennsylvania Sea Grant ($72,891) focused on evaluating non-traditional sources of the antimicrobial agent triclosan in a southeastern Pennsylvania. Dr. Goldsmith and Dr. Grannas (Villanova Department of Chemistry) initial work is the first to show the existence of this compound in portions of streams located above municipal wastewater treatment plants.


Upcoming Events

Contact Information

Department of Geography and the Environment
Suite G67, Mendel Science Center
Villanova University
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085
Tel: (610) 519-3337
Fax: (610) 519-3338

Dr. Francis A. Galgano

Graduate Program Director:
Dr. Lisa J. Rodrigues

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