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“RESTORE offers me a complete graduate experience, combining course work with practical research experience.”

  
Project Title:
Degradation of 1,2 – Dichloroethane

Project Description:
Chlorinated solvents such as trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE) and 1,2-dichloroethane (1,2-DCA) are widely used in industry nowadays. If released to the environment, these contaminants represent a risk to human health. Since these chlorinated solvents could take hundreds of years to naturally attenuate, it is of great research interest to find new and more effective technologies to successfully remediate such sites in a timely manner. Unlike the others chlorinated solvents, 1,2-DCA has proven to be very resistant to degradation using different remediation techniques such as nano-scale Zero Valent Iron (nZVI). I will look into new ways to optimized the degradation conditions of 1,2-DCA using nZVI, and other zero-valent metals (e.g. Zn).

Personal Background:
I completed my Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from Utah State University (USU). While at USU, I had the opportunity of working as a research assistant and as a field technician for air quality consulting companies in Logan, UT. In the same way, I have worked as an environmental technician for Falcondo Xstrata Nickel and as an intern for Barrick Gold Pueblo Viejo, two mining companies in the Dominican Republic (my home country). After being exposed to various fields in environmental engineering through my classes and work experience, I decided to focus on remediation for my master degree and my professional career. As a master student at Western I want to further improve my research skills and be able to conduct my own research projects in the future. 

 
Travel and Awards:

  • Recipient of a Merit-Based full Presidential Scholarship, Dominican Republic Government (2007-2012)
      
  • Outstanding Junior of the Year, Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, USU (2010-2011)