Dena Vallano

Washington, DC, US
Field of Work 
Ecology
Company 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Job Title or "Student" 
AAAS Policy Fellow at the U.S. EPA
Education 
Villanova University
Degree 
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Education Level 
PhD
Profile Biography 
Dena Vallano is an ecologist whose work focuses on air quality, climate change, biodiversity, and plant physiology. Prior to beginning her AAAS Fellowship at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Dena was a postdoctoral scholar in the Environmental Studies Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her work addressed the environmental and policy impacts of atmospheric nitrogen and ozone pollution on California serpentine grasslands. Dena came to UCSC from Cornell University, where she completed her PhD in the field of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. Her dissertation work focused on leaf uptake of atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In 2008, she was awarded the Ecological Society of America's Graduate Student Policy Award, an opportunity that greatly influenced her desire to work at the interface of science and policy.

Aside from her academic pursuits, she has been actively involved in science education and outreach through tutoring in Philadelphia, sparking girls' interest in science through the Expanding Your Horizons program, and speaking engagements at several elementary and high schools. She received her BS in Biology from Villanova University and is a native of Philadelphia, PA.
Interests 
Working outdoors, Reading, Travel, Sports
Race & Ethnicity 
White
Level of Participation 
After-school visit, Field trip participation, Online role model
My Experience 
I am a new Role Model.
Availability 
No Preference
Resources 
Career exploration activities, Field trip hosting, Fun demonstrations or materials, Hands-on activities for students, Identifying other role models
Program Affiliation 
Other

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