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Caroline Ummenhofer

Caroline Ummenhofer

Caroline Ummenhofer received a Joint Honours B.Sc. in Marine Biology and Physical Oceanography from the University of Wales, Bangor, UK, and a PhD in Applied Mathematics, specializing in climate modeling, from The University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney, Australia. Her PhD thesis received the Uwe Radok Award in ocean/atmosphere/climate science by the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society.  Caroline was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Mathematics and Statistics of Complex Systems, held a Vice-Chancellor Postdoctoral Fellowship at UNSW, and was a Visiting Fellow with CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research in Hobart, Australia. Since 2012, she holds a faculty position in the Physical Oceanography Department at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, USA.

Her research interests include interannual to decadal climate variability, the hydrological cycle, monsoon dynamics, extreme events, droughts, hydroclimate paleo reconstructions of the last millennium, historical climatology, bio-physical interactons, marine heatwaves, and the effects of climate on agriculture.  In particular, her research focuses on Indian Ocean dynamics, its variability and role for regional rainfall variations and droughts in the surrounding countries, spanning from seasonal to decadal timescales. A key goal of Caroline’s research has been to bridge the gap between ocean and climate dynamics and its impacts on end users. As such, she aims to provide practical outcomes of use to stakeholders in the agriculture and water management sectors and the broader public.


Tessa Giacoppo

Research Assistant since 2023;  project on maritime weather observations from New England whaling ship logbooks

Theo Carr

Theo Carr

MIT-WHOI Joint Program student since 2020; Guest Student 2019-2020 (B.S. Mathematics, Northeastern University); project on seasonal rainfall forecasting using machine learning

Shawn Wang

Shawn Wang

MIT-WHOI Joint Program student since 2019; project on Southeast Asian hydroclimate and Indo-Pacific climate drivers using paleoproxies and models


Ashley Schefler

MIT-WHOI Joint Program student since 2023; Summer Student Fellow 2022 (B.S. in Physics, Haverford College); project on variability and change in oxygen minimum zones


Neele Sander

Guest student since 2022 (BSc Physics of the Earth System, Christian-Albrechts-University, Kiel, Germany), sponsored by RISE; project on whaling ship logbooks


Daniel Waitzmann

Guest student since 2023 (BSc Physics of the Earth System, Christian-Albrechts-University, Kiel, Germany), sponsored by RISE; project on Indo-Pacific Warm Pool variability in ocean and climate models



Andrea Belvis-Aquino

Summer Student Fellow 2023 (B.S. in Industrial Engineering, University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez); project on ocean salinity's utility for crop yield predictions


Svenja Ryan

Postdoctoral Investigator, Research Associate 2022-2023; projects on New England coastal/shelf variability; Postdoctoral Fellow 2019 – 2021, supported by an Alexander von Humboldt Feodor-Lynen Fellowship on marine heatwaves

(now Assistant Scientist at WHOI)



Nina Whitney

Postdoctoral Fellow 2020-2022; supported by a NOAA Climate and Global Change fellowship on Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation variability over the late Holocene using Western North Atlantic water mass proxies and numerical models

(now Assistant Professor at Western Washington University)


Sujata Murty

Postdoctoral Scholar 2018-2020; project on Indo-Pacific climate variability from coral proxies and high-resolution ocean models

(now Assistant Professor at SUNY Albany)

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Vincent Johnson

Summer Student Fellow 2021 (B.S. in Oceanography & Atmospheric Sciences, Oregon State University); project on Indian Ocean tropical cyclones


Bastian Münch

Guest Student 2021 (BSc Geography, Julius-Maximilians University Würzburg, Germany) sponsored by RISE; project on North Atlantic Ocean pressure and wind patterns using historic ship logbooks

(now graduate student at Boston College)


Evan Meeker

Guest Student 2020 (Applied GIS and Spatial Analytics, Antioch University New England); project on Indian Ocean pressure and wind patterns using historic ship logbooks

(now graduate student at University of Wisconsin Madison)


Nathaniel Cresswell-Clay

Guest Student 2018-2020, Semester at WHOI Student 2017, (B.S. Mathematics, Tufts University); projects on frontal rainfall in Southwestern Australia; eastern ocean basin upwelling systems; Azores High variability

(now graduate student at University of Washington)


Cali Pfleger

Guest student 2018-2019 (B.A. Geology and Environmental Studies, Cornell College); project on the Australian hydroclimatic response to volcanoes during the last millennium from stalagmites and climate models

(now graduate student at UC Santa Barbara)


Peidong Wang

Summer Student Fellow 2018 (B.S. Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences, Mathematics, University of Wisconsin-Madison); project on the role of volcanic eruptions for North Atlantic regional hydroclimate

(now graduate student at MIT)


Adwait Sahasrabhojanee

Guest Student 2018 (M.S. Operations Research, Northeastern University); project on predicting extreme events in the water cycle


Madison Shankle

Summer Student Fellow 2017 (B.S. Geology & Geophysics, Environmental Engineering, Yale University); project on the role of Indian Ocean warming for regional rainfall extremes


Samuel Coakley

Summer Student Fellow 2017 (B.S. Marine Science, Rutgers University); project on Southeast Asian monsoon variability in the Last Millennium Ensemble

(now Program Specialist at US CLIVAR Program Office)


David Smith

Guest Student 2017 (B.S. Computer Science and Mathematics, Northeastern University); project on decadal predictions over the North Atlantic Region

Lily Hahn

Lily Hahn

Summer Student Fellow 2016, Guest Student 2017 (B.S. Geology & Geophysics: Atmosphere, Ocean and Climate, Yale University); project on “Increasing Greenland melt and blocking in recent decades modulated by large-scale and regional circulation changes”

(now graduate student at University of Washington)


Zoraida Perez Delgado

WHOI-SOARS Fellow 2015 (B.S. Environmental Science, Universidad Metropolitana, Puerto Rico); project on “Satellite and model analysis of coral reefs in the Western Indian Ocean from 2001 to 2007”

Siraput Jongaramrungruang

Siraput Jongaramrungruang

Summer Student Fellow 2015 (BA Natural Sciences, University of Cambridge, UK); project on “Intraseasonal SST-precipitation coupling during the Indian Summer Monsoon and its modulation by the Indian Ocean Dipole”

(now graduate student at CalTech)

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Pia Freisen

Guest student 2014 (BSc Physics of the Earth System, Christian-Albrechts-University, Kiel, Germany), sponsored by RISE; project on “Decadal variability in atmospheric blocking in the Southern Hemisphere extratropics”

(now graduate student at Monash University, Australia)


Gabriela de la Cruz Tello

WHOI-SOARS Fellow 2014, SOARS 2015 (B.S. Meteorology, San Jose State University); project on “The effect of changes in the Hadley Circulation on oxygen minimum zones in the ocean”


Marco Kulüke

Guest student 2013 (BSc Meteorology, University of Hamburg, Germany), sponsored by RISE; project on “Precipitation in the Horn of Africa linked to Indo-Pacific climate variability”

(now data manager at Deutsches Klimarechenzentrum (DKRZ), Germany)

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Manny Hernandez

WHOI-SOARS Fellow 2013, 2014 (M.S. Geography, Texas A & M);  project on “Links between regional monsoon circulation and local hydroclimate in Southeast Asia”

(now graduate student at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

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