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Cielo Angelica Sharkus, PhD

About

I earned my M.S. and Ph.D in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, under Dr. Christian Guzman in the Water Resource Engineering Program. During my time at UMass, I earned over $400,000 in grant, scholarship, and fellowship funding including the NSF research traineeship, Switzer Fellowship, USGS Diverse Knowledge Systems Fellowship, and two American Water Works Association scholarships. Before my time at UMass, I earned my B.S. in the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where I was passionate about water quality. At WPI, I worked on water quality projects locally in Massachusetts and abroad at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) industrial chemistry laboratory as a Grand Challenge Scholar and Gilliam fellow.

Mission

My mission is to dissect and disentangle the multifaceted and intersecting issues of water quality, water affordability, utility management, and climate change. As a water resource engineer, I have experience working with local, state, and federal agencies to assess methods to best support water resource management in municipalities in Massachusetts. I aim to work with collaborators and experts to evaluate the invisible impacts of climate change, such as the mobilization of legacy contaminants, impacts of aging infrastructure, and community cultural values. Most importantly, I use my expertise to evaluate the impact that environmental detriments have on watersheds and ecosystem services.

Climate change affects us all in different ways, but what if it could teach us how to adapt and prepare our communities better? We could have safer cities, cleaner water, and longer power generation that could last centuries as we adapt and change.

Vision

My vision is to aid municipalities, utilities, and communities that are facing challenges related to water quality and management. I aim to be actively involved with NE-AWWA and the Water Equation to learn from and engage with other water and utility experts. Moreover, I am committed to serving NSBE and local community organizations through service-oriented leadership and public service. I aim to make a positive impact in my profession through my career as a consultant, as a mentor to others, and through service to my community.

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