2014-2015 Luce Scholar

Earth Observatory Singapore SINGAPORE

Kyle hails from a small town just outside of Dover, Delaware. He is a recent graduate from Emory University in Atlanta, where he double majored in Environmental Science and Mathematics. During his time at Emory, he worked in a lab studying pollination ecology and honey bee declines. Kyle spent two summers doing ecological field research for his advisor at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory near Aspen, Colorado.

At the RMBL, Kyle and his lab team experimentally removed a single pollinator species from a field site and then observed how the foraging behaviors of the remaining pollinator species changed. The lab team found that these changes in foraging behavior negatively effected the reproductive fitness of wildflowers pollinated by the bee species, reducing seed set by up to 30%. At Emory, he has carried out independent research studying the effects of El Niño/La Niña phenomena on the flowering phenology of plants from the RMBL and surrounding areas. He is currently involved in a research project trying to tease apart the details of new pollination network data that were gathered recently.

While Kyle’s main research focus in school has been of bees and pollination, his career interests lie in the climatological and atmospheric sciences, stemming from a childhood spent almost entirely outdoors where an appreciation for nature flourished. He hopes to one day use his research experience and mathematical knowledge to enter the complex field of climate modeling and prediction to address important questions facing our planet, such as pollution control and management.

Kyle is an avid percussionist of 11 years and a life-long music enthusiast. He enjoys crabbing in the Chesapeake Bay and spends most of his holiday time at home fishing on a family owned pond. He spends the majority of his time outside and will jump at the opportunity to take a long backpacking trip, go camping, or just take a short day hike. He also enjoys skiing, but opportunities are limited due the lack of mountainous topography in Delaware and Atlanta.

The 2014-2015 Luce Scholar placement for Kyle Niezgoda is at the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS) at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. The Earth Observatory of Singapore conducts fundamental research on earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis & climate change in and around Southeast Asia, towards safer and more sustainable societies. The Earth Observatory of Singapore aspires to make earth science relevant to the improvement and the quality of people’s lives, and connects with individuals and institutions that prepare and build resilience in Southeast Asian communities through a better understanding of advances in Earth science.