Dr. Emily Kumpel (she/her) is an Assistant Professor in the Environmental and Water Resources Engineering (EWRE) group in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She has an M.S. and Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Kumpel has over a decade of experience conducting research on topics including intermittent water supply, water quality in distribution systems, water access and equity, water quality monitoring, and use of information and communication technologies in water delivery systems. Prior to joining the faculty at UMass, Dr. Kumpel was a Senior Research Scientist with the Aquaya Institute, where she was based in Nairobi, Kenya, for three years. She has conducted extensive field research in India, Kenya, Senegal, and Nigeria, and collaborated on research projects in more than a dozen other countries throughout Africa and Asia.

c.v.  ·    Google Scholar·    ResearchGate

Joining the group. If you are interested in joining our research group to work on research related to drinking water and sanitation quality, access, and reliability in developing countries and in the US, please contact me (ekumpel (at) umass (dot) edu) with which elements of the research described on these pages interests you, as well as your experience and how you would fit into the group. Applications to the CEE department at UMass are due in early January every year.

Current Post-Docs and PhD Students

Kaycie Lane is a Postdoctoral Researcher at UMass Amherst, having started in Spring 2020.  She received her Ph.D. in 2020 from the Civil Engineering Department at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, focusing on risk management for small and rural communities.  She graduated from Colorado School of Mines in 2014 with a B.Sc. in Engineering Physics with a double minor in Biology and Humanitarian Engineering.  Kaycie has worked with municipal, Indigenous and Arctic communities during her research to examine how water safety planning can be used in Canada to support more holistic water management.  Her research at Amherst will focus on understanding the implications of implementing point of use treatment options in community water systems.  Kaycie is also a certified personal trainer and group fitness instructor, serving on the Board of Directors for the Nova Scotia Fitness Association, and is actively engaged in her fitness community.  Outside of research, she teaches group fitness, hikes in Utah with her family and enjoys a good book.

Nelson da Luz is currently pursuing his PhD in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering at UMass Amherst. He received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and Master of Engineering degree in Environmental Engineering from Manhattan College. His research there focused on sediment transport modeling for the tidal freshwater Hudson River and modeling bioaccumulation of PCBs in benthic invertebrates. He also served as a research assistant working on the Contamination Assessment and Reduction Project for NY/NJ Harbor. Nelson started his PhD at UMass Amherst in the Fall of 2017. Nelson’s research interests include understanding how sampling/monitoring activities for potable water systems and natural systems can impact protection of human health as well as data science for WaSH applications. When he’s not doing research, Nelson enjoys exploring cities, hiking, cooking, and board games.

Mimi Alkattan (she/her) is a PhD candidate in the Environmental and Water Resource Engineering graduate program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Mimi received a Bachelor of Arts with a concentration in Environmental and Water Resource Engineering from Hampshire College. As an undergraduate, Mimi served as a project manager for Engineers Without Borders. Prior to graduate school, Mimi joined the Peace Corps and served as a community health agent in Guinea and Mali, West Africa. Mimi believes that assess to drinking water and sanitation should not be a barrier to the well-being of communities and individuals. Mimi supports STEM education and efforts to increase representation inclusion in STEM. Mimi’s current research focuses on drinking water quality in intermittent water supplies in low- and middle-income countries.

Amanda Marques is currently pursuing her PhD in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She received her Bachelor of Science in Water Resources and Environmental Engineering from Federal Fluminense University, Brazil, with a Minor Degree in Sustainability Studies from Roger Williams University. Amanda received her Master of Science in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Rio de Janeiro Federal University, Brazil. Her work there as a graduate research assistant was to investigate water demand and supply projections under climate change scenarios, aiming to come up with sustainable ways to manage multiple water uses within one of Brazil’s most challenging watershed. She started her PhD at UMass Amherst in the Spring of 2020. Her research will focus on water quality in the Wachusett and Quabbin reservoirs of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Amanda enjoys traveling, outdoor activities, cooking, and photography. Amanda is co-advised by Christian Guzman.

Current MS Students

Bridgette Charlebois is  pursuing her Master of Science degree in Environmental and Water Resource Engineering at UMass Amherst. She received her Bachelor of Science in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UMass Amherst in 2019. Bridgette works in the Water Energy and Technology (WET) Center at UMass where they partner with startup water technology companies to provide pilot scale research needed for marketing technology. She has worked as a research assistant at the WET Center for four years working on multiple projects such as using an electrochemical cell for the removal of PFAS and assisting in the design and construction of a fully functional mobile drinking water treatment facility. She most recently co-led a six-month pilot scale project using a commercial electrochemical water treatment system focusing on ammonia removal in wastewater. Her thesis research focuses on water quality and designs of rainwater catchment systems. Bridgette is from Vermont and enjoys all things outdoors such as hiking, skiing, and sailing. Bridgette is co-advised by Dave Reckhow.

Hannah Wharton is pursuing her Master’s of Science in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from UMass Amherst in 2019. As an undergraduate, Hannah worked in the Water, Energy and Technology Center, testing pilot water treatment technologies. Hannah completed her undergraduate thesis on Comparing the removal and inactivation of E. coli and total coliform in point-of-use water treatment for low income settings. She also greatly enjoyed being a project manager for UMass Engineers Without Borders’ Kenya project, with which she travelled on implementation trips twice in her undergrad. Hannah worked for a specialized water, wastewater, stormwater consulting engineering firm for a year before starting her Master’s degree. In her free time, Hannah likes traveling, swimming, hiking, and baking.

Current Undergraduate Researchers

Tom Roberts is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a double major in economics and a minor in environmental and natural resource economics. Tom’s senior thesis focuses on the effectiveness and lifespans of POU/POE devices in treating PFAS-contaminated drinking water. At UMass, he has been a research assistant with the Department of Economics and the School of Public Policy, and he currently interns at ISO New England as an asset registration and new generation analyst. He is interested in pursuing a PhD with research interests in sustainable development, environmental health, hygiene, and sanitation. In his free time, Tom enjoys running, cooking, and drinking coffee.


MS students:

LeighAnn D’Andrea (MS, 2019) – Project Programmer, 27th Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron, US Air Force

Savannah Wunderlich (MS, 2020)

BS students:

Stephen Stamegna, Hannah Wharton, Akshay Delity,  Farah Rawas (MS Student, University of British Columbia), Siddhi Rathi (visiting researcher from Vellore Institute of Technology)