CSIRO scholarship awarded to PhD student

La Trobe University Albury-Wodonga PhD student, Annaleise Klein, has been awarded the 2011 CSIRO Flagship Collaboration Fund Top-up Scholarship: Water for a Healthy Country

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The scholarship aims to involve the wider Australian research community in addressing critical national challenges including the current battle with blue-green algae. Annaleise’s PhD, ‘Iron Biogeochemistry in Aquatic Ecosystems’ will look closely at this problem.

‘My research is centred on how iron interacts with fresh water biota, in particular with blue-green algae. There are only limited published studies on the interaction of naturally occurring iron and blue-green algae with conflicting results. I hope to bring new understanding to this area of research.’ she says.

Annaleise studied a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Management and Ecology at La Trobe before completing her honours thesis. After taking a year off working for the University and the Murray-Darling Freshwater Research Centre (MDFRC) as a demonstrator and laboratory technician, she decided to pursue doctorate studies.

‘The year long break and work experience confirmed that I wanted to work in the research realm. I still do a little work demonstrating in practical classes for first-year chemistry students but research is definitely my priority,’ she says.

With the first three months of a PhD under her belt, the 23 year-old is optimistic about building on the limited and inconsistent literature regarding the interaction between iron and blue-green algae, with the outcome of the research hopefully resulting in better water resource management.

The scholarship includes $7,000 per annum for the top-up stipend and $4,000 per annum for travel and operating expenses. Annaleise will also receive a once off $6,000 to support attendance at an international conference and associated overseas laboratory visit.

‘The scholarship has given me the ability to purchase specialised equipment to support this research, and allow me to pursue this issue from a very fundamental point of view. Hopefully this will lead to a more comprehensive understanding of the interaction between iron and blue-green algae and more importantly may contribute to better management and the prediction of blue-green algae blooms,’ Annaleise says.

For any media enquiries please contact:

Meghan Lodwick


La Trobe University Communications Officer 
T: 03 9479 5353 E: M.Lodwick@latrobe.edu.au

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