Graduate Students

Hannah Bagli

I graduated from Appalachian State in Spring 2020 with a B.S. in Community and Regional Planning. I was a 4+1 student, so I completed half of my graduate degree as a senior.

My previous research experience includes CAVs (Connected and Automated Vehicles) or self-driving cars and community development and accessible recreation in Southeast Tennessee, North Georgia, and East Alabama. Continuing at Appalachian, my research interests include CAVs, community and economic development, and transportation planning.

My personal interests include: hanging out with my cat, riding horses, biking, and finding the best iced coffee.

Ben Capell

I graduated with a B.S. in Outdoor Leadership and Biology minor from North Greenville University in December of 2017.

My research experience primarily comes from employment opportunities. As an environmental intern at a public utility, I contributed to a feasibility study of large-scale solar panel power generation. My most recent position as a materials testing technician gave me the opportunity to evaluate the performance of geosynthetics used to improve roadway longevity. My interests in this graduate program are: Planning, Conservation Ecology, Hydrology, and GIScience.

My personal interests include: biking, rock climbing, woodworking, and working on bikes.

Bailey Chavis

I graduated from Appalachian State University in May of 2020 with my B.S. in ecology, evolutionary and environmental biology and a minor in geography as well as a GIS certificate. I am currently pursuing my  M.A. in Geography with a focus on GIS and GIScience.

My research interests include climate change, GIS technology and advancements, remote sensing imagery, and biological species conservation and ecology. Previously I have been involved in pollinator research which focused on the geographical distribution of bumble bees along the Blue Ridge Parkway. I hope to direct my future research towards species preservation and conservation using GIS technology.

My personal interests include fungi foraging, hiking, listening to music, and anime.

Amy Cox Harrelson

I graduated with an A.A.S. in Civil Engineering Technology from Gaston College in August of 1990, and a B.S. in Business Administration from Gardner-Webb University in May of 2012. Upon completion of NCBELS required field time and state examinations, I obtained my Professional Land Surveyor licensure in January of 1994. I have been a practicing land surveyor and small business owner for over 26 years, with additional intermittent employment experience at the senior project management level.

Research interests: Urban Planning, Policy, GIScience, Appalachian Culture

Personal interests: Family, Baking, Banjo Picking, Violin

Heather Dulaney

I graduated with a B.S. in Meteorology from Virginia Tech in December of 2018.

My prior research includes: urban heat and flood mapping, marsh migration mapping, and climate modeling of the alteration of hydrological and energy fluxes due afforestation. Here at Appalachian State, I am interested in the study of climate change's affects to high latitudes and mountains, snow and ice, and hydrology.

I enjoy music, hiking, and cooking during my free time.

Nick Gastelle

I graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a B.S. degree in Urban and Regional Planning in December 2019.

My research interests are in Urban Density, Demographic Mapping, Political Geography, and Global Urbanization. I am currently researching cross-professional collaboration potential between Social Workers and Urban Planners at the community level.

My personal interests are Skiing, playing Basketball and Soccer, Yoga, and I am also learning German and Swedish. 

Leah Handwerger

I graduated with a B.S in Sustainable Development and a minor in Nonprofit Management from Appalachian State University in 2015.

My prior research includes aquatic ecology, land conservation, and watershed management. At Appalachian, I'd like to explore the impacts climate change has on humans and aquatic ecosystems, particularly in the Southern Appalachian region.

In my spare time, I enjoy anything outdoors, seeing live music, and playing the violin.

Stella Harden

I am an Accelerated Admissions student graduating in December 2018 with a B.S. in Geography and a minor in Political Science.

Research Interests: Human Migration, Politics, Climate Change, Health, GIScience

Personal Interests: Running, Volunteering, Animals, and Cooking

Tatiana Magee

Tatiana Magee double-majored in Geography and Community and Regional Planning with a certificate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) at Appalachian State University and is currently working towards her M.A. in Geography. During her time as an undergraduate she studied abroad to the Cordillera Vilcanota with Dr. Baker Perry in 2018 and then returned with Dr. Derek Martin and Dr. Mark Spond in 2019 as a translator and student instructor. When she’s not in the Geography lab, she can be found climbing around the High Country, hiking in the Blue Ridge, and enjoying the various outdoor opportunities that Western North Carolina has to offer.

During her internship at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy as the Southeastern Community Research Coordinator, Tatiana was responsible for researching outdoor recreation economic development project initiatives and related economic analyses of A.T. Communities to promote geotourism. As a latinx in both the outdoor community and environmental realm, individuals like herself are rarely along the trail, at the crag, or in the boulder field. With society continuing to separate itself from the natural environment, the promotion, protection, and potential of its influence is more critical than ever. 

Jon Maurer

I graduated with dual degrees in Climatology and Oceanography from the University of Maine in May of 2020.

My prior research includes paleoclimate, paleoceanography, glaciology, satellite oceanography, and geophysics.  The focus of this research has been monitoring and understanding the climate as it has evolved over Earth’s history and how it continues to change today. At App State I hope to study the effects of climate change on high mountain regions and how that change will affect populations that rely on those regions for water.

My personal interests include running, rock climbing, skiing or anything outdoors.

Camila Moreno

I graduated from Appalachian State in 2018 with a B.A in Spanish and a double minor in political science and geography. I have a broad range of interests such as GIScience and politics, but I am hoping to study more about climatology and understanding how current changing weather patterns will affect, and are affecting resource availability for marginalized populations in places such as Latin America.

Personal Interests: I love to make my own bread, spend time outside kayaking on the lake or river, hiking, walking my dogs, snowboarding, etc.

Alex ONeill

I graduated from Appalachian State in December of 2018 with a B.S. in Geography GIS. I am currently working on my masters thesis.

My research interests include glaciology, high mountain geography, climate change, water vulnerability, and human-environment interactions.

My personal interests include downhill skiing, ice and rock climbing, backpacking and film photography.

Quincy Williams

I graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville in May of 2020 with a B.S. in Geography and minor in GIS.

My prior research includes paleoecology, dendrochronology, historic preservation, remote sensing, and digitization. The focus of these studies has been to illustrate the complex systems that both affect and are affected by human actions. At Appalachian State University, I hope to study hydrological systems and to contribute to better understanding how human development affects our surroundings.

My personal interests include aviation, Nordic skiing, sea kayaking, sailing, and canoeing.