Seeking PhD students for a transdisciplinary graduate training program.  Applications will be reviewed starting on February 1st, 2022, with priority given to those applications received prior to February 1st, 2022. Rolling admission will continue through May 1st, 2022.


Team-TERRA: Mark Urban, PI, and trainees: Madeleine Meadows-Mcdonnell, Sarah Klionsky, Raul Flamenco, Franco Gigliotti, Yan Chen, Jessica Espinosa, Adam Gallaher

Welcome to Team-TERRA - Building Resilient Landscapes for Food, Energy, Water, and Ecosystem Services in America’s Original Megalopolis.  Team-TERRA is a newly funded transdisciplinary training program in the Center of Biological Risk at the University of Connecticut. The training program consists of a 2-year sequence of coursework, teamwork, a real-world internship, and associated workshops. We will use the northeastern US megalopolis stretching from Boston to Washington, D.C. as a living laboratory to understand, predict, manage, and communicate risks to food, energy, water, and ecosystems in the face of global change. As part of the training program, trainees will work in diverse teams to predict and solve complex problems of the future in regions that are urbanizing and stretched to both provide the essentials for human wellbeing while maintaining the many benefits of biodiversity and natural ecosystems. 

Welcome Team-TERRA Cohort 2021-2022
Adam Gallaher, Sarah Klionsky, Raul D. Flamenco, Jessica Espinosa, Franco Gigliotti, Madeleine Meadows-McDonnell, & Yan Chen

Welcome Team-TERRA Cohort 2022-2023 so far...
Peter Billman, Ketki Samel, Katja Kwaku

Fig. 1: Nighttime lighting patterns highlight America’s original megalopolis. This region provides an unnatural laboratory for predicting the resilience of FEWES to future risks and diverse opportunities for enhanced graduate education. UConn and the Cary Institute are situated within the last agricultural and wild lands.

Hartford, CT skyline

Values Statement

  • Open-mindedness
  • Give and receive support to create an equitable, empathetic, inclusive environment
  • Purpose-driven to improve the world
  • Freedom to grow
  • Overcome barriers

News & Events

Congratulations to Team-TERRA fellow Adam Gallaher, who in addition to getting published in UConn Today, has just had a OpEd that he wrote in the Sci Comm class last semester published in the Hartford Courant. Link is here.
Congratulations to Madeleine Meadows-McDonnell for the UConn Today article The Goldilocks Effect: Adding the Right Amount of Sediment to Salt Marshes Keeps Coastlines Afloat - UConn Today
Congratulations to Adam Gallaher, the lead author in the 12/16/21 article in UConn Today about reducing risks to the electrical grid.  and his interview on NBC News here
11/30/21 James O'Donnell, David Murphy and John Truscinski, of CIRCA UConn, gave a talk on sea level rise.
Congratulations to Program Coordinator, Charlotte Nelson for receiving the Provost's Award for Excellence in Community Engaged Scholarship for staff.

Collaborative Partner Organizations

We are excited to collaborate with these partner organizations:

  • The premier ecosystem research institute, the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, NY. Together, we will study the risks to the urbanizing landscape of the northeastern U.S
  • UConn Institute of the Environment has a mission to advance research, education, and engagement concerning the environment and sustainability at the University of Connecticut. 
  • UConn Center for Biological Risk seeks to improve the capacity to assess, manage, and communicate biological risks of global change through research, teaching, and community outreach. The Center focuses on risks that affect, originate from, or are mediated by biological systems. 


Interested in learning more about the program?

University Events

  1. Jan 28 Connecticut Student Writers Magazine Submission Deadline12:00am
  2. Jan 28 Letters About Literature Submission Deadline12:00am
  3. Jan 28 Social Work Practice Fellows9:00am
  4. Jan 28 Voter Access In Blue States10:00am
  5. Jan 28 Voter Access In Blue States10:00am
  6. Jan 28 Psychiatry Grand Rounds11:00am


1st year


  • EEB 5872 Environmental Risk Assessment, Tuesdays, 9:30am-12:30pm, Bamford Room, Room 171B in Torrey Life Science (3 credits) 
  • EEB 5882 Environmental Risk Practicum 1, Thursdays, 9:30am-11:30am, Bamford Room, Room 171B in Torrey Life Science (3 credits) 
  • EEB 5895 Section (018) Environmental Risk Communication, Thursdays, 11:30am-12:30pm, Gant 416 (1 credit) 
  • EEB 5482 Science Communication II: Writing for Public Audiences, Tuesday/Thursday, 2:00pm-3:15pm, Gentry 140 (3 credits) 


  • EEB 5882 Environmental Risk Practicum 2, Tuesdays, 9:00am-12:00pm, Bamford Room, Room 171B in Torrey Life Science (3 credits)
  • GIS course elective (3 credits)

2nd year