Students & Staff


Lindsey Aldaco-Manner Lindsey Aldaco-Manner is a graduate student pursuing an M.S. in Water Resource Management and Hydrological Sciences at Texas A&M University. Lindsey received her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from Baylor University (2014). Before beginning graduate school, Lindsey spent time volunteering in Nicaragua, and working for an environmental field school program Earth2O in Costa Rica, where she co-developed a Water-Energy-Food study abroad program hosting 15 students from across the US. Lindsey is a graduate research student for the governance subgroup of the WEF Nexus San Antonio Case Studies (WEFNI-SACS), and her research focuses on the decision-making processes and governance issues related to water reuse in San Antonio. Lindsey’s research interests also extend to transboundary water and water security issues in South America. At A&M she has worked for the Texas Water Resources Institute on various watershed protection and management projects. Lindsey currently serves as the President for the Texas A&M Water Network, a new professional student chapter of the American Water Works Association.
Victoria Chavez is a third year undergraduate student at Texas A&M University pursuing a B.S. in Civil Engineering with a concentration in Environmental Engineering. She is conducting Research in regards to the soil-water holding properties of soil textures with different methodologies and various concentrations of nanoparticles. She plans on pursuing a graduate degree in Ecological Engineering and eventually working in environmental restoration.
Jennifer Dargin is a Massachusetts-native, public health-turned- civil engineering student with a passion for learning foreign languages and living sustainably. While pursuing a degree in Public Health with a focus in Global Environmental Health and Sustainability from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst, she helped lead a community development project to improve the water infrastructure system of a remote Haitian village. Jennifer went on to spend her final year in Jordan and Turkey to study firsthand the region’s environmental health challenges and public health response to Syria’s refugee crisis. She also conducted an independent study on water conservation practices in Jordan. Her experience in the water-stressed region inspired her leap into civil engineering at Texas A&M University, where she is now a Graduate Research Assistant with the WEF Nexus Research Group. Her current research focuses on the application of computational technologies to the water-energy- food nexus. More specifically, she is interested in finding sustainable approaches to maximizing the use of green water in agriculture as a means for improving water and food security.
Smiling man in department shirt Varun Gejji  is a PhD student in Biological and Agricultural Engineering with a focus Bioprocess Engineering. He received his Bachelor of Technology in Biotechnology from University of Pune, India and worked on bio-separation processes for a start-up company before joining Texas A&M for graduate studies. His current work is focused on the development of a two phase system to selectively separate proteins from a mixture of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids present inside algae after the algal cells are broken down. This work has direct application in the food industry, for the development of therapeutic proteins. A part of his work will also focuses on dewatering algae and extracting lipids from it in a single step. The lipids extracted could be further processed and used for biodiesel production. He believe that, this technique if used on industrial scale can help reduce the total production. Varun is also the GTA for BAEN’s Senior Capstone Design course.
Smiling man Jordan Muell is a M.S. student studying Biological and Agricultural Engineering at Texas A&M University. He earned his B.S. in Agricultural Engineering, with a focus in Land and Water Resources and a minor in Sustainability, from Iowa State University in 2016. Jordan gained a background in Geographic Information Systems, surveying, and watershed modeling through independent study and internship experience. He conducted research on stream restoration as an REU student at Oklahoma State University and on woodchip bioreactors for water quality at Iowa State. Jordan is a Graduate Research Assistant investigating the Water-Energy Nexus, and is part of the Water-for-Energy subgroup of the WEF Nexus San Antonio Case Study. In the future, he aims to improve food and water resource sustainability, both nationally and globally, earning his PE license and practicing soil and water conservation engineering.
width= Jifar Nata is a PhD candidate in Water Management and Hydrological Science at Texas AM University. He earned his M.Sc. Agricultural Economics (2013) from Texas AM University. Jifar has been actively engaged in science based policy research specific to water resource management and policy analysis for over 8 years in different capacities and institutions. His current research focuses on the water-energy-food nexus impact of higher groundwater demand scenarios for agriculture, energy, and residents, specifically the groundwater sustainability and societal welfare in the Carrizo-Wilcox aquifer of South Texas. His modeling approach to studying the impacts aim at helping bridge the gap between science and decision making, enabling decision makers to use science to prepare for new water demands that are rapidly increasing, in spatial and temporal scales.
Tolu_1 Tolu Omotoso holds a B.Sc. in Industrial Chemistry from the University of Lagos, Nigeria (2009) and an M.S., Civil Engineering with a focus on Environmental Engineering, from Purdue University, USA (2012). He is currently working on his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at Purdue. His research focuses on the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus. His research, will attempt to contribute knowledge to nexus analyses and provide an understanding on how these technical inter-linkages interact in Nigeria. Rice production in the Bida-Badeggi Staple Crop Processing Zone (SCPZ), Bida, and a proposed hydropower dam both in Niger State, will be used as a case study to devise sustainability scenarios based on data on water, energy and food. It is anticipated that the outcomes of the study will assist policy makers in Nigeria to understand the risks and opportunities of current policy strategies by pointing out trade-off options between water, energy and food.
mary_web Mary Schweitzer joined the Nexus team as Program Manager in August 2014. She brings rich experience in international work and in administration. She came to Texas from Purdue University’s Global Engineering Program where she developed and enriched opportunities for international experiences in engagement, learning and research. Mary has organized numerous international meetings focused on agriculture development and resource management. With Mohtar, she helped develop global service learning opportunities in Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, and contributed substantially to diversity and inclusion opportunities for the international community at Purdue. Between 2000 and 2008, Mary worked with US and Middle East institutions and research groups facilitating sustainable cooperative research partnerships in agricultural science: organizing regional workshop and short courses. She has experience in administering peer review programs, public relations, and program development, including consideration of political factors that may impact program operations. Mary also has substantial experience in working with NGOs and in peace and human rights activism.
Jeffry Tahtouh is pursuing a Master of Science in Water Management and Hydrologic Science. After graduating from Sam Houston State University (2015), he interned in Earth Link & Advanced Resources Development, S.A.L, Beirut, a leading regional consultancy firm. Now, Tahtouh is a Graduate Research Assistant at Texas A&M University’s Water-Energy-Food Nexus Initiative (WEFNI), and part of the water for food subgroup in the WEFNI San Antonio Case Studies. He is researching the impacts of irrigating with reclaimed water on soil chemistry and mineralogy. Jeffry’s research interests also extend to other non-traditional water use for agriculture.

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