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Megan Barbara Young

Megan Young specializes in isotope biogeochemistry research as a member of Carol Kendall’s Isotope Tracers Project at the USGS in Menlo Park, California. She also manages the Menlo Park Tritium Laboratory, providing tritium analysis for groundwater age dating within the USGS.

Megan received her Bachelor of Science in Geology from the University of Puget Sound, Washington, and her Ph.D. in Geological and Environmental Sciences from Stanford University in 2006, working with Dr. Adina Paytan. Her research has focused on using a wide range of natural tracers, including stable isotopes, geochemical constituents, and radioactive isotopes to trace natural and anthropogenic nutrient sources through surface and groundwater systems, and on the development and application of new isotope tracing techniques. Megan is currently working on large scale multi-isotope tracer studies in rivers, estuaries, and ground water in the San Francisco Bay Delta and Central Valley, California. One focus of her current research is on expanding the use of the oxygen isotopic composition of phosphate into freshwater systems as a tracer of phosphate sources and cycling, and she has co-authored several articles and book chapters on this topic.

Professional Experience

  • October 2010 to present: Research Hydrologist/Isotope Biogeochemist. Isotope Tracers Project, USGS Water Resources Mission Area, Menlo Park, CA

  • June 2006 to October 2010: Postdoctoral Researcher/Physical Scientist. Isotope Tracers Project, USGS Water Resources Discipline, Menlo Park, CA

  • September 2008 to January 2009: Postdoctoral Research Associate. Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, University of California, Davis, CA

  • Summer 2006: Instructor-Introduction to Oceanography (C82), U.C. Berkeley, Berkeley, CA

  • January 2006 to May 2006: Postdoctoral Researcher (short-term). Chemical Oceanography Lab, Stanford University, Stanford, CA

  • September 1999- January 2006: Graduate Student & Teaching Assistant (PhD program). Chemical Oceanography Lab, Stanford University, Stanford, CA

  • April 1998- July 1999: Geologist (for environmental consulting firm). Environmental Partners, Bellevue, WA

  • Fall 1997: Field Assistant, crab predation project in Bahia Kino, Sonora, Mexico

Education and Certifications

  • Ph.D., 2006. Stanford University, School of Earth Sciences, Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences (Stanford, CA)

  • B.S., 1997. University of Puget Sound, Geology Department (Tacoma, WA)

Honors and Awards

  • USGS Star Awards (annual), 2008-2012

  • NRP Lecture Series Speaker, 2010

  • Lieberman Fellowship, Stanford University, May 2003- June 2004

  • Stanford Graduate Fellowship: 3-year fellowship, Sept 1999- June 2003

  • McGee Foundation, Graduate Research Grants, 2000, 2001

  • Shell Fund Research Grants (conference travel), 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003

  • Phi Beta Kappa, Delta of Washington chapter, May 1997

  • Murdock Summer Science Research Grant for Senior Thesis, April 1996

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