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Meet Ann Willis - Recipient of the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Ann Willis - National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Grad program: UC Davis Civil and Environmental Engineering (PhD) - already completed my master's in the same program
Undergrad: University of Southern California - English and Print Journalism
Hometown: Rye Brook, New York
Advisor: Jay Lund

Interview Questions:

3 Watershed Women Win Science Research Fellowships

Three researchers from the shed have each been awarded a distinguished science research fellowship.

Ann Willis is the recipient of the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship - a program dedicated to help ensure the vitality and diversity of the scientific and engineering workforce of the United States. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and in STEM education.

Seminar: Hydrologic Dynamics of Greenland Ice Sheet presented by Dr. Vena Chu

Dr. Vena Chu is a distinguished scholar and an expert on the Greenland ice sheet. Dr. Chu is a UC President's Postdoctoral Fellow at the UC Berkeley Department of Geography.

The Hydrologic Sciences Graduate Group has invited Dr. Chu to come to UC Davis and speak on the hydrologic dynamics of the Greenland ice sheet.

Below is the abstract for her presentation. We hope you join us for an invigorating discussion.

California’s Delta-Groundwater Nexus: Economic and Water Supply Effects of Ending Groundwater Overdraft in California’s Central Valley

Several researches from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Davis have recently published an article on the nexus between California’s Delta and groundwater.

The paper examines the economic and water management effects of ending long-term overdraft in California’s Central Valley, the state’s largest aquifer system. These effects include changes in regional and statewide surface water diversions, groundwater pumping, groundwater recharge, water scarcity, and resulting operating and water scarcity costs.

April 4-5: Weathering Change: Impact of Climate Change and SGMA on CA Water Conference

Can California adapt to the challenges of climate change? How will the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) influence water availability and allocation in California? What is the best path moving forward? These are all questions that will be answered in the Weathering Change: The Impact of Climate and the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act on California’s Water Conference.

Feb 29 talk: “Impacts of National Flood Insurance Program on Endangered Species and Floodplain Management”

Monty Schmitt, a Senior Scientist and San Joaquin River Restoration Project Manager of the National Resources Defense Council, will talk about the impacts of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) on endangered species and the implications for floodplain management in California.

Several biological opinions from agencies such as the National Marine Fisheries Service and the 2017 federal reauthorization of the FNIP “represents an opportunity to reform the NFIP to improve floodplain management, restore natural floodplain functions and protect fish and wildlife habitat.”

What lies behind the dam?

Recent research shows that Chinook salmon stocked as sport fish in California reservoirs are successfully spawning. K. Martin Perales’ research has shown there is good reason to believe there are multiple populations of landlocked Chinook salmon are completing their life cycle above Central Valley dams.

Open Applications for Spring 2016 Ecogeomorphology Class

The Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology and the Center for Watershed Sciences are offering a unique Spring quarter course in Applied Watershed Science. Similar to the Shlemon Courses taught in previous years through the Geology department (see, this course is a multidisciplinary study of the ecology, geomorphology and management of rivers in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California.

Center to Host Speaker Series on Drought

The Center for Watershed Sciences and UC Davis School of Law is hosting a weekly series of public speakers on California water policy this winter, beginning Jan. 4, 2016.

The California Water Policy Seminar Series is on Mondays, 4:10 pm to 5:30 pm, at 2303 King Hall.

Click here for the series schedule, topics, and speakers.

The series is open to the public and available for credit. [For an extended graduate seminar on water policy (1 unit ECI 298) contact Professor Lund at]

Welcome Nicholas Pinter

Nicholas Pinter

A nationally recognized expert in flood risks and management has joined the Center for Watershed Sciences, bringing to UC Davis a Midwestern perspective on rivers and plans for collaborating with river researchers worldwide. 

A geology professor, Nicholas Pinter arrives from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale where his research on natural hazards, geomorphology and flood hydrology took him to many distant lands, including the northern coast of Chile, south-central Europe and California’s Channel Islands.

Nov. 18: 'Facing El Nino – Challenges & Opportunities'

WHAT: Interdisciplinary presentations and panel discussions on the prospects, challenges and opportunities of California having an El Niño event with heavy precipitation this winter.

WHEN: 3:30 p.m.— 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015

WHERE: Walter A Buehler Alumni Center, UC Davis

PLEASE NOTE: Seating is limited. Advanced registration required. Registration is free and available by emailing

Nov. 3: Watershed Sciences Communications Workshop

Chris Austin

With meager resources, Chris Austin has made Maven's Notebook the go-to place for staying current on California water science, policy and management. On Tuesday, Nov. 3, Chris will share many of the simple, inexpensive and effective ways students, researchers and faculty can engage with California’s water community – as well as journalists and the public at large.

Pre-registration required.

Fisheries scientists honor Peter Moyle

Peter Moyle, the Center's Associate Director, has been named to the inaugural class of American Fisheries Society Fellows.

Moyle, a UC Davis Distinguished Professor Emeritus in fish biology, is one of 83 AFS members recently so honored by their peers for "outstanding or meritorious contributions" to fisheries science and management, according to an AFS news release.

Drought bites harder, but agriculture remains robust


The drought is tightening its grip on California agriculture, squeezing about 30 percent more workers and cropland out of production than in 2014, according to the latest drought impact report by the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences. In 2015, the state’s agricultural economy will lose about $1.84 billion and 10,100 seasonal jobs because of the drought, the report estimated, with the Central Valley hardest hit. The analysis also forecasts how the industry will fare if the drought persists through 2017.