About Me

My name is Marisa Repasch. I am a PhD student, an explorer, a trail runner, a mountain biker, a basketball player, and an artist when I find time to put paint onto canvas. I am fascinated by rivers and am pursuing research to understand how they interact with the landscape.

Digging for organic carbon in the Walcott Shale, Nankoweap Valley, Grand Canyon, AZ

My new home is in Potsdam, Germany where I am pursuing a PhD in Earth Sciences. I am working with scientists in various disciplines at the GFZ German Centre for Geoscience Research at the Helmholtz Centre – Potsdam. My primary advisors are Dirk Sachse (organic geochemistry) and Niels Hovius (geomorphology). We are an integral component of the StRATEGy international research training group funded by the DFG (Link to StRATEGy Program). Our goal is to understand the geomorphic drivers of the isotopic composition of terrestrial organic matter transported through fluvial systems draining the NW Argentinian Andes.

I recently earned my M.Sc. degree in Earth and Planetary Sciences at the University of New Mexico, under the supervision of Dr. Karl Karlstrom. Living in New Mexico inspired me to ask questions about the development of its amazing landscape. I decided to study the evolution of the New Mexico landscape, and in order to do that I chose to study the Rio Grande. Rivers set the pace of regional landscape evolution, so by learning the rates of change in the Rio Grande and the processes that drive these changes, we can understand how and why the New Mexico landscape has evolved the way it has.

Prior to graduate school . . .

I was born and raised in Fountain Hill, Pennsylvania. Basketball, rollerblading, woodland-frolicking, and story-writing sum up my formative years. In 2014 I received my B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science from Lehigh University, where I fell in love with Geology and academia. In addition to discovering my passion, I played on Lehigh’s Division 1 women’s basketball team.