CEE PhD student Brittany Hicks has received the Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Through its Fellowship Programs, the Ford Foundation seeks to increase the diversity of the nation’s college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, maximizing the educational benefits of diversity, and increasing the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students.
The Ford Foundation Fellowships provide three years of support for individuals engaged in graduate study leading to a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or Doctor of Science (ScD) degree. Predoctoral fellowships are awarded in a national competition administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (the National Academies) on behalf of the Ford Foundation.
Hicks is a PhD student in Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Her research interests involve connections between drinking water quality, aged infrastructure, and public health. She is particularly interested in (1) shifts in microbial community dynamics from distribution systems to premise plumbing, (2) understanding how emerging opportunistic pathogens cooperate and compete in microbial communities within high water age environments, and (3) assessing potential risks of pathogen exposure for various populations including vulnerable communities. She is advised by Professor Nancy Love.