Mariah became an FCCAgE scholar in 2013. She is graduating from FIU in May 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry with Environmental Focus and her certificate in Agroecology
Research Experience: Redmond conducted a 10-week research study at Virginia Tech during summer 2014. The National Science Foundation sponsored her fellowship in its Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program: Interdisciplinary Water Sciences and Engineering. Mariah helped to develop a phosphorus (P) fractionation procedure, which was used to extract P from reservoir sediment. She observed the bioavailability and mobility of different forms of P in reservoir sediment. The study was particularly interesting because the field site (Falling Creek Reservoir in Bedford County, Virginia) has an oxygenation system installed. Redmond was able to determine that the oxygenation system is effective at mitigating P release into the water column from sediment.
Community Engagement: Last year Mariah served as a team leader with Urban Paradise Guild, working biweekly with the nonprofit organization. She helped to construct community gardens and biological habitats at several locations in South Florida, including Oleta River State Park, Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, and Lemon City in Little Haiti. Seed bombing remains one of her hobbies, and her pollinator-loving flower of choice is native blanket flower.
Interesting trumpet-like petals of Gaillardia (blanket flower) from Mariah's garden
“The FCCAgE grant and Agroecology program at FIU have turned my love for nature into hands-on career development. My advisors work closely with me to find lab projects relevant to my personal interests in biogeochemistry. I am also engaged in gardening projects on campus; learning to grow vegetables and herbs has been exciting and rewarding. My favorite thing to harvest is moringa leaves, which I use in my homemade organic tea blends.”
Current Perception of Agriculture: “The United States faces a severe and multifaceted crisis, but I believe in a brighter tomorrow. The socio-economic impacts of sustainable agriculture gleam brightly with abundant hope. With my sweat, I vote for a sustainable future. With the help of FCCAgE, I dedicate my career to solving the problems of today.”
Career & Research Aspirations: Mariah aspires to be an industry analytical chemist, focusing on quality assurance.