Graduate Students


Sean Gazdewich I investigate the evolution of seawater chemistry and carbon cycling in deep time. This work draws from concepts related to carbonate sedimentology, isotope geochemistry and chemostratigraphy. Specific techniques that I employ include: core logging, sedimentary petrography, carbon and oxygen isotope mass spectrometry and numerical modelling. Currently, field research is being undertaken within the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin to assess the impact of authigenic carbonate deposition on the global carbon cycle during the Late Devonian period.


Ben Kumpf My research interests are broad trends preserved within marine evaporites through the Phanerozoic. Specifically, how well changes in evaporite mineralogy correlate with marine non-skeletal limestone mineralogy to asses changes in seawater chemistry. My study techniques involve Snorkel, a text-mining program, to leverage data stored within published documents at GeoDeepDive. By utilizing these methods, we can evaluate a time-series abundance of marine evaporite mineralogy through the Phanerozoic (co-advised by Laurence Coogan).


Jerry Lei I am interested in marine environment environmental shifts recorded off the West coast of North America during the Late Triassic. I do this by integrating carbonate lithostratigraphy with the carbon stable isotope record, and with conodont microfossils. Fieldwork has taken me to The Yukon, Northern BC, and northern Vancouver Island. Ultimately the findings may reflect both regional and global environmental shifts, aid in better understanding of terrane tectonics in the North American Cordillera, and refine Late Triassic conodont taxonomy.

Undergraduate Students


Isaac Dekker I am interested in using marine carbonate geochemistry to understand and reconstruct paleoenvironmental conditions during the Ediacaran/Cambrian transition. Currently, I am working on using carbon and oxygen isotope ratios to better characterize changes in seawater chemistry through time in the Late Ediacaran Miette Group carbonate platform (Mount Fitzwilliam, British Columbia). I am also working on analyzing iodate in these rocks to give a proxy for atmospheric oxygen during the time of deposition.


Connor Vanwieren I am interested in understanding how marine carbonates can be used to understand changes in seawater chemistry over Earth’s history. This is done primarily through Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry (IRMS) to analyze carbon and oxygen isotopes. Currently I am working on reconstructing marine paleoenvironmental conditions during the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic through carbonate isotope chemostratigraphy and biostratigraphy of dinoflagellate cyst assemblages, studied in the Parson Bay Formation of northern Vancouver Island.

Past undergraduate and graduate students


Dominic Fode, Honours undergraduate Hi! I'm a recent graduate of the Earth Science program at University of Victoria. My undergraduate research and honors project focused on examining the large scale sedimentary record of Australia in a macrostratigraphic framework. I am interested in investigating Earth system evolution through "Big Data" and modelling approaches underpinned by investigative fieldwork.


Anna Grunsky, Honours undergraduate I am interested in using carbonate geochemistry to reconstruct past climates and environments. In my honours research project I measured the concentration of iodate in carbonates in the Wonoka Formation (South Australia) from the Ediacaran to determine the concentration of atmospheric oxygen at the time of deposition. I also compiled other geochemical data to assess the reliability of iodate as a proxy for atmospheric oxygen concentration in rocks that have undergone post-depositional alteration.


Mariko Cappellò, M.Sc. Before coming to the University of Victoria, I received my bachelor degree in geological sciences from the University of Bologna (Italy). I am interested in geochronology and I am particularly fascinated by the absolute dating of geologic material as a means to better understand Earth history. I am currently working on a project using U-Pb high precision dating to better constrain the Ordovician-Silurian boundary from ashfalls from Anticosti Island (eastern Canada) and Sweden.