I am a PhD candidate and NSF Research Fellow in the Ecology Graduate Group at UC Davis. My PhD advisors are Andrew Latimer and Susan Harrison. I work primarily in California annual grasslands but I am broadly interested in community ecology and population dynamics. My research questions focus on understanding how species interactions alter an organism’s response to the abiotic environment through indirect effects as well as how populations persist under a variable climate through specialized life history strategies such as seed banks. I'm also interested in how projected increases in climate variability feeds into these, affecting both species interactions and persistence.
I am a native Californian, I grew up outside of LA and completed my undergraduate degree in International Studies & Economics at UC San Diego. My drive to understand environmentally sustainable development led me to uncover a passion for plants and ecology followed soon after that. While I’m an ecologist by trade, botany holds a special place for me. I still enjoy keying out elusive mystery plants that pop up in my work and watching annual wildflowers come to life each year is like seeing a close friend for the first time in a long while!
Upon graduating from UC San Diego, I interned at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center with John Parker and Dennis Whigham where I fell in love with the Eastern Deciduous Forests. Afterward, I became a lab and field technician for Peter Adler over at Utah State University where I worked on demographic studies in the sagebrush steppe of Idaho, Chihuahuan Desert of New Mexico, and the tallgrass prairie of Kansas.
In my free time I enjoy hiking, cooking, reading, yoga, and doodling faces.
Contact me! Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Office: Plant and Environmental Sciences 2211 Mailing address: Marina LaForgia Dept. of Plant Sciences One Shields Ave Davis, CA 95616