“Soil, Not Dirt” Says SWES Graduate in New YouTube Video

Rebecca Lybrand, SWES Ph.D. graduate, has produced a YouTube video about soil. The title of the video is

Soil, Not Dirt: Connecting Soils, Plants, and Climate in the Southwest US

The production is the result of a project for the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS) Climate & Society Graduate Fellowship she received in 2014 during her graduate studies.

The video documents Rebecca’s soils research across the Santa Catalina Mountains just outside of Tucson, AZ. The goal of Rebecca’s video was to engage students and social media viewers using an energetic, first person exploration of how soils change across different life zones. Rebecca’s sites span over 4000 feet of elevation gain from desert scrub and desert grasslands close to Biosphere 2 to pine and mixed conifer forest on Mount Lemmon.

More information about the project and an interview with Rebecca by  Emily Huddleston  can be found on the CLIMAS website http://www.climas.arizona.edu/blog/rebecca-lybrand-2014-climas-climate-society-graduate-fellow  





About Rebecca

Rebecca Lybrand was a 2014 doctoral graduate in Soil, Water & Environmental Science at the UA.  She worked with SWES professor Craig Rasmussen and the Environmental Pedology Group. Her dissertation research focused on how mineral weathering and soil carbon storage changed with landscape position, and the contrasting climates encompassed by the Santa Catalina Mountains of southern Arizona. 

In addition to the CLIMAS scholarship, she also received the UA/NASA Graduate Space Grant Fellowship which focused on promoting space and soil science to Native American and Hispanic youth. Rebecca was a graduate fellow with the UA Science Sky School program where she introduced local K-12 students to the soils on Mount Lemmon and oversaw student-led research projects. Rebecca has received several graduate student presentation awards including an Outstanding Student Paper Award at AGU in 2011, a Joe Dixon Award for best graduate student talk in Soil Mineralogy at the 2012 Soil Science Society of America Meeting, and first place for her oral presentation in the 2014 SWESx /Earthweek event.

While a student, Rebecca was actively involved in teaching and taught Soil Genesis, Morphology, and Classification; Soil Judging; Introduction to Environmental Sciences; and Soil Physics.

Rebecca is currently a post-doctoral research associate with Rachel Gallery's Plant-Soil Microbial Ecology research group in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment at the UA. She is currently investigating soil-landscape features and the microbial ecology of disturbed soils. To date she has 5+ peer-reviewed journal articles and several others in preparation. She continues to be involved in outreach activities including serving as a K-12 Student Science Educator, and mentoring student interns with summer projects as well as semester-long independent study projects.

More information about Rebecca and her research can be found on her website