Current PhD Students
Aaron Opdyke is currently pursuing a PhD in Civil Engineering under the discipline of Construction Engineering and Management with an emphasis in Engineering for Developing Communities. His research is investigating post-disaster coordination and reconstruction processes in the Philippines and his research interests include sustainable development and disaster recovery. He completed his B.S. in Civil Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo prior to attending CU. Aaron enjoys snowboarding, backpacking, photography, and traveling in his free time. For a link to Aaron’s website and blog please see here.
Cristina Poleacovschi is pursuing a PhD in Civil Engineering within the Construction Engineering and Management program. She graduated with a Bachelor of Economics in Construction Management from Technical University of Moldova and a MS in Civil Engineering from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. She became interested in global projects while working at the International Astronautical Federation. She is investigating knowledge governance strategies.
Erin Arneson is pursuing a PhD in Civil Engineering in the Construction Engineering and Management program with co-advisors Dr. Amy Javernick-Will and Dr. Matthew Hallowell. She graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University and a MS in Construction Engineering and Management from the University of Washington. Prior to entering academia, Erin worked in the architecture and construction industry as a project manager for over seven years. Her research focuses on how the construction industry can be better utilized to increase community resilience and disaster recovery efforts within the U.S.
Allie Davis is a PhD student in Civil Engineering focusing in Civil Systems and Engineering for Developing Communities with co-advisers Amy Javernick-Will and Sherri Cook. She is researching sustainable sanitation systems in India and looking specifically at the influence of resource recovery on community priorities and long-term sustainability. She finished her B.S. in Civil Engineering with a Spanish Minor at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Allie enjoys hiking, backpacking, scuba diving, and traveling.
Andrew Tracy is a PhD student in Civil Engineering focusing in Civil Systems. He is researching the effects of oil and gas activities on community networks and community knowledge sharing associated with induced seismicity and hydraulic fracturing. Andrew earned his B.S. in Construction Engineering at Marquette University. He enjoys hiking, going to concerts, and traveling to see far-flung friends and family
Shaye Palagi is a Civil Systems PhD student focusing on how construction and planning decisions are managed in post-disaster relocation projects, while also pursuing a certificate in Engineering for Developing Communities. She focuses on relocation projects set in motion by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, specifically around Tacloban City. Shaye is also an officer in the Colorado Air National Guard as a civil engineer. She grew up in Montana but after getting her B.S. in Environmental Engineering at CU and sticking around for several years more, she’s come to call Colorado home.
Casie Venable is a PhD student in Civil Engineering focusing in Civil Systems and Engineering for Developing Communities with co-advisors Amy Javernick-Will and Abbie Liel. Prior to attending CU, she received her BS in both Civil Engineering and Construction Engineering and Management from Virginia Tech. Her research is studying community participation in and structural performance of post-disaster housing in Ecuador. Casie enjoys traveling, going to concerts, and playing soccer with friends.
Current Masters Students
Alex Zerio is a Masters student in Civil Engineering focusing in Civil Systems. He is researching training programs centered on sustainable and resilient construction practices for post-disaster communities, particularly in the Philippines following 2013’s Super Typhoon Yolanda. He holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point and a M.S. in Engineering Management from Missouri Science and Technology. Alex is an officer in the U.S. Army, serving in the the Corps of Engineers.
Current Undergraduate Students
Ursula Bryn Grunwald is pursuing a dual degree in Mechanical Engineering and International Affairs with an emphasis on sustainable energy and South America. She spent a gap year in the Philippines in 2013, and became interested in disaster relief and sustainable developing after experiencing Typhoon Yolanda’s impact on her host island of Negros Occidental. She is currently assisting Alex Zerio and Aaron Opdyke on a project that investigates livelihood and skills trainings done by local governments and nongovernmental organizations in the Philippines post-Typhoon Yolanda. Bryn loves capoeira, reading, and traveling.
Elizabeth Jordan graduated with a PhD in the area of civil systems. Prior to coming to CU, she obtained a B.S. and M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from M.I.T. She became interested in engineering systems in the developing world through volunteer work with Engineers Without Borders and completed her research on post-disaster recovery in developing communities, focusing on Tamil Nadu India. Upon graduation, Elizabeth has consulted for NORC (www.norc.org) to evaluate evaluations for the Millennium Challenge Corporation, worked for Poverty-Action as the Implementation Manager for WASH benefits, and is now a AAAS fellow working for USAID.
Jessica Kaminsky graduated with a PhD at the University of Colorado, Boulder in the Civil Systems program with an emphasis on Engineering in Developing Communities. Jessica was awarded an EPA Star Fellowship to investigate the sustainability of sanitation systems in resource-limited communities by investigating knowledge networks, technology diffusion and legitimacy. Prior to CU, Jessica received her bachelors degree in civil engineering from Rice University and worked with CH2M Hill. She loves to travel and is a volunteer Spanish and French translator for Kiva.org. Jessica is now an Assistant Professor at the University of Washington.
Jeff Walters graduated with a PhD in Civil Engineering in Civil Systems in the Summer of 2015. Jeff had a BS in Civil Engineering and an MS in Structural Engineering from the University of Washington and a MS in Environmental Engineering from the University of Colorado Boulder. Jeff is interested in international water development and his PhD used a system dynamic modeling framework that can be used to plan for and maintain sustainable rural water infrastructure in developing countries. Jeff was co-advised by Amy and Paul Chinowsky with Bernard Amadei. Jeff is now an Assistant Professor at Universidad Diego Portales in Santiago, Chile.
Kaitlin Litchfield completed her PhD with the group in December of 2014 in Civil Engineering within the Civil Systems program focusing on socially engaged engineers, Engineers Without Borders, and engineering education. Her research investigated gender diversity, identity, and motivations of engineers. She received her BS in Civil Engineering from the University of New Hampshire. She continued to work with the group as a Post-Doc until September 2015. Kaitlin is spending time with her family.
John Wanberg graduated with a PhD in Civil Engineering under the discipline of Construction Engineering and Management in the Summer of 2014 and completed a Post-Doc with the research group in the Fall of 2014. His research investigated knowledge sharing across boundaries in organizational networks. John is now the Strategic Knowledge Manager for MWH Global.
Eric Antillon is pursuing a PhD in Civil Engineering in the Construction Engineering and Management program. His research focuses on infrastructure project delivery, primarily within the growing research arena of Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs). His research interests include life-cycle design decision-making and project finance of PPPs. Eric previously completed his BS and MS at the University of Colorado Boulder in Civil Engineering. Eric enjoys rock climbing, snowboarding, movies, traveling and living in other places, and simply spending quality time with friends and family.
Wesam Beitelmal is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Construction Engineering with co-advisors Dr. Keith Molenaar and Dr. Amy Javernick-Will. He has a BS in Civil Engineering from Garyounis University in Benghazi, Libya and an MS in Engineering Management from the Academy of Postgraduate Studies in Benghazi, Libya. After witnessing the difficulties developing countries face in managing their infrastructure, Wesam is investigating asset management systems in developing countries. In his free time, Wesam likes to discover new places in the US with his family and friends and play sports such as soccer, basketball, and swimming.
Barbara Anderson graduated with her MS degree in Civil Engineering under the discipline Civil Systems, with an emphasis in Engineering for Developing Communities in December, 2014. Her research focused on decision-making by NGO’s in post-disaster reconstruction projects. Barbara enjoys music, hiking, and cooking.
Florence Berteaux graduated with a Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering with emphasis on Construction Engineering and Management. She had previously completed her BS at ESTP Paris (Ecole Spéciale des Travaux Publics) and completed her Masters Thesis work on Adaptation versus Integration for project teams working internationally. In her free time, Florence enjoys travelling, playing tennis, swimming and ballet dancing. Florence now works for Ernst & Young in Paris, France.
Maryam Sanaei graduated with a MS in Civil Engineering with emphasis on Construction Engineering Management at the University of Colorado-Boulder. Her research investigated knowledge transfer processes in multigenerational construction workplaces.
Christopher Senesi graduated with a MS in Civil Engineering at the University of Colorado at Boulder in the Civil Systems program with an emphasis in Engineering for Developing Communities in 2012. Chris was an RA on the CII RT280 project dealing with probabilistic controls. He currently works for Parsons Brinckerhoff as an Associate Consultant. Outside of engineering, Chris is an active volunteer with an organization that works with homeless and at-risk youth and is setting up a knowledge management system for NGOs.
Shahad Alrakhayes received a BS in Architectural Engineering in 2009 from CU-Boulder. She stayed to pursue her MS in Civil Engineering with an emphasis in Construction Engineering and management and graduated in 2011. Her research interest and topic was on Risk Management in International Construction Projects.
Paul Arnold received a BS in Civil Engineering with an emphasis in Construction Engineering and Management in 2002 from CU-Boulder. Paul worked in the commercial Construction Industry for 7 years before returning to CU in the fall of 2010 and completed a Master’s Degree in the CEM Program on information management on a construction project level. In his free time Paul enjoys the skiing, hiking, biking and following Buffs Football. Paul now works for iprojectmobile.
Remi Jouandou graduated with a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering in the Construction Engineering and Management Program in December, 2010. He was co-advised by Professors Javernick-Will and Molenaar. Remi’s thesis topic focused on risk analysis methods with a an emphasis in probabilistic cost and schedule controls. Remi now works as a Technical Engineer at VINCI Construction in France.
Haley Goddard is currently working to obtain a BS in Environmental Engineering with an emphasis in water resources and treatment and developing communities in addition to pursuing a minor in Political Science. She is currently assisting Cristina Poleacovshi with her graduate research. Haley is a member of the Society of Environmental Engineers (SEVEN) and the Alpha Delta Chi sorority. She loves the outdoors and will be traveling to Fiji this summer for volunteer work.
Hannah Moench graduated with Bachelors in Evolutionary Biology and Ecology and Geography as well as certificates in Hydrology and South Asian Studies. She grew up between Colorado and Nepal and became interested in disaster response and the social dimensions of water development while living in Varanasi. She assisted on the investigation of disaster response and stakeholder coordination in the aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines. Hannah enjoys road trips, climbing and reading.
Christin Kapatayes graduated with a BS in Civil Engineering with a concentration in water resources at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her research analyzed social networks in globalized organizations. Christin loves to travel, play tennis, and spend time with family and friends. Christin now works for MWH.
Casey Casias completed a Bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her academic interests lie mainly in biomimicry and sustainable structures in developing communities. Outside of school, she enjoys rock-climbing, cooking, reading, and cycling. Casey is currently pursuing her PhD at the University of Notre Dame.
Amanda Walker graduated from the University of Colorado studying psychology and sociology. She completed an honors thesis in psychology. After graduation she plans to pursue graduate school in psychology. Amanda worked closely with John Wanberg on the VOSS project. In her free time, Amanda enjoys volunteering with the Mental Health Partners of Boulder as well as working out, gaming, and watching sports.
Rebecca Scheetz is an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in Civil Engineering with an Applied Math minor. She is currently assisting John Wanberg on the VOSS project. In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, and just generally exploring the great outdoors.
Alayna (Layni) Wachter is an undergraduate student in Environmental Engineering. She is working on an REU (Research Experiences for Undergraduate students) grant through NSF to investigate project team structure of EWB-USA students. Layni likes to skateboard in her free time.
Smit Patel is an international student from India, pursuing a BS in Civil Engineering with a Construction Engineering and Management emphasis. His research invesitgates the influence of timezone on knowledge sharing connections and networks within multi-national engineering and construction organizations. Smit likes to play music, read, travel and work.
Celeste Havener is an undergraduate student in Environmental Engineering. She is a native of California currently studying Environmental Engineering with an emphasis of Ecology, while also pursing a minor in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. She assisted Elizabeth Jordan to determine what factors allow a community to successfully recover after a natural disaster and is now working with John Wanberg on the VOSS project.
Jessica Bryne is currently pursuing a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She is studying Engineers Without Borders as a model to explore identity and gender in Engineering.Jessica recently travelled to Nepal with the EWB-USA team.
Student Committees and Collaborations
Greg Rulifson, P.E. (PhD)- Primary advisor: Angela Bielefeldt
Beth Myers (PhD)- Primary advisor: Angela Bielefeldt
Todd France (PhD)- Primary advisor: Michael Brandemuehl
Chris Harper (PhD)- Primary advisor: Keith Molenaar
Christie Chatterley (PhD)- Primary advisor: Karl Linden
John O’Brien (PhD)- Primary advisor: Paul Chinowsky
Nat Sobin (PhD)- Primary advisor: Keith Molenaar
Rayyan Alsamadani (PhD)- Primary advisor: Matthew Hallowell
Nathan Canney (PhD)- Primary advisor: Angela Bieldefelt
Timothy McGuire (MS-Thesis)– Co-advisors: Keith Molenaar, Amy Javernick-Will, Matthew Hallowell
Jaimie Morales, Jr. (MS-Thesis) – Primary advisor: Paul Chinowsky
Ibrahim Issa (MS-Report)- Primary advisor: Keith Molenaar
Jung Choi Kue (MS-Report)- Primary advisor: Amy Javernick-Will
Antoinne Tixier (MS-Thesis)- Primary advisor: Matthew Hallowell
Kevin Baud (MS-Thesis)- Primary advisor: Matthew Hallowell
External to CU-Boulder
Cheryl (Shu Fang) Chi received her B.S. in Civil and Engineering and MBA at Cheng Kung University, Taiwan and her PhD at Stanford University. She now is a Postdoctoral Scholar at Tsinghua University in China. Amy served on Cheryl’s committee and published a paper with her.
Anna Maria La Ratta is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Management Engineering at Università della Calabria (UNICAL), Italy, with a focus on Business Management and Services. Anna received a BS in Management Engineering at UNICAL in 2008 with a focus on Industrial Technologies Management and a thesis on Industrial Design Methodologies. Amy hosted Anna as a visiting scholar in 2010 and served on her graduate thesis committee.
Vedran Zerjav is a Ph.D. student in the Institute of Interdisciplinary Construction Process Management at Vienna University of Technology, Austria. He is also a lecturer in the Department of Construction Management and Economics at University of Zagreb, Croatia, where he completed his Mater’s thesis. Vedran and Amy collaborated on a work distribution project together and co-published a paper.