La Trobe A-W expert wins national awards

La Trobe University river health expert Dr Aleicia Holland has been nationally recognised for her exceptional research into freshwater ecosystems.

A senior lecturer at the University’s Albury-Wodonga Campus, Dr Holland recently received two prestigious awards: The Australian Freshwater Sciences Society’s Early Career Excellence Award and the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry’s Early Career Researcher Medal.

“Whether I’m working here on the Murray, or in Brazil in the Amazon Basin, I am passionate about improving river health around the globe. My aim is to inform water quality guidelines and make sure policy makers and community members understand the vital importance of healthy freshwater ecosystems,” Dr Holland said.

“I am privileged to work with an amazing group of mentors, collaborators and students at La Trobe and externally – without their support over the years, I would not be where I am today.”

Dr Holland’s research investigates the role dissolved organic carbon plays in aquatic ecosystems, its characterisation, its influence on aquatic communities, and the toxicity of contaminants such as metals.

Her current projects include:

  • The influence of dissolved organic carbon on metal toxicity to freshwater organisms
  • Amazonian fish microbiomes
  • Peatland condition and headwater aquatic ecosystems
  • Supervising PhD students investigating aspects of dissolved organic matter in aquatic ecosystems, Metal toxicity and bioavailability in Australian waters and soils,  Victorian dragonfly distribution.

Dr Holland follows in the footsteps of fellow Albury-Wodonga La Trobe researchers. In 2009 Centre for Freshwater Ecosystems Director Professor Nick Bond won the Australian Freshwater Sciences Society Early Career Excellence Award; and Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Freshwater Ecosystems Associate Professor David Crook won the same award in 2010.

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