DURHAM, N.C. – Thirteen Nicholas School of the Environment undergraduate students have earned Graduation with Distinction honors for 2022.

The Graduation with Distinction program recognizes undergraduates who have demonstrated academic excellence through the successful completion of a senior thesis based on a substantive independent research project evaluated by a committee of three faculty members. The projects typically include a 25- to 50-page written manuscript and a poster summarizing its findings.

To earn the honor, students also must have earned a 3.0 grade point average overall and a 3.2 grade point average in their major. The Nicholas School offers BS and AB degrees in Earth and Climate Sciences; BS and AB degrees in Marine Science and Conservation; an AB in Environmental Sciences & Policy, and a BS in Environmental Sciences.

This year’s recipients of Graduation with Distinction honors (along with their project titles and the names of their faculty advisor) are:

  • Dana Adcock, “A Juvenile Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) Produces Song Fragments in Winter Feeding Ground.” Advisor: Andrew Read
  • Lily Cooper, “Suitability Evaluation of Amorpha georgiana var. georgiana in the Carolina Sandhills.” Advisor: Nicolette Cagle
  • India Haber, “Assessing the Role of Eavesdropping Behavior in Intraspecific Competition among Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).” Advisor: Douglas Nowacek
  • Zachary Horowitz, “Quantification of Microplastic Accumulation Patterns within the Duke University Marine Laboratory Oyster Aquafarm.” Advisor: Thomas Schultz
  • David Hugo, “The Dangers of Going with the Flow: Using Autonomous Transmitters to Document Downstream Passage Conditions and Risk of Fish Injury at Dams.” Advisor: Nishad Jayasundara
  • Kellie Johnson, “Faunal Associations and Ecotone Analysis of a Blake Ridge Cold Seep.” Advisor: Cindy Van Dover
  • Kenneth Lau, “Assessing Recreational Fishing Effort with Satellite Imagery.” Advisor: David Johnston
  • Fernanda Machicao, “Mediation Analysis to Evaluate How Lead and Mercury Exposure Mixtures Affect Cognitive Development.” Advisor: William Pan
  • Maddie Paris, “Understanding Variance in Marsh Predator Disturbance Patterns in Pacific Estuaries.” Advisor: Brian Silliman
  • Jwalin Patel, “Impact of Local Input and Non-Timber Benefits on Rates of Return of Investment in Forest Restoration in India and China.” Advisor: Jeffrey Vincent
  • William Rawling, “A Comparison of 21st Century Heat-Related Mortality in Eastern Asia Between Two Shared Socioeconomic Pathways.” Advisor: Drew Shindell
  • Ryan Rogers, “Consumer Regulation of a Parasite-Host Interaction: Density Dependent Control of Oyster Parasites by Opportunistic Consumers.” Advisor: Brian Silliman
  • Avery Taylor, “Community Structure and Biodiversity of a Blake Ridge Chemosynthetic Seep.” Advisor: Cindy Van Dover