WNY PRISM would like to welcome the final members of our 2022 seasonal Crew! Join us in welcoming Diana Chaburka and Jason Kappan, our Survey and Monitoring Technicians, and Megan Kresse, our GIS Technician. Diana and Jason will be in the field, surveying sites for early detection species and helping with monitoring and management. Megan will be doing a habitat suitability model for the invasive goatsrue to assist with prevention and management.
Diana Chaburka, Survey and Monitoring Technician
Diana is a recent spring 2022 graduate of the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Geosciences. She has background using ArcGIS Collector from her internship with the NYS OPRHP FORCES (Friends of Recreation, Conservation, and Environmental Stewardship) program in Fall of 2021, where she gained experience with invasive species surveys and removals. By working for WNY PRISM, Diana hopes to develop a better understanding of invasive plant identification to continue learning about the various ways to protect ecosystem health. In her free time, she likes to go out with friends, make friendship bracelets, and read thriller books and novels beside her kitty Anfisa.
Jason Kappan, Survey and Monitoring Technician
Jason is a graduate student at Buffalo State College working on his Master of Science in Great Lakes Environmental Science. An alumni of The University at Buffalo with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies focused on Environmental Resources and Management. Jason has worked with WNY PRISM for the last three seasons. The first season, he was as a Boat Inspection Steward, and an Invasive Species Management Assistant in his second and third seasons. After that, he stayed on as an Early Detection Technician and is excited for this new position! Jason has also briefly interned for NYSDEC and NYS PARKS Forces helping with bird surveys. In his spare time, he volunteers with The Audubon Society learning how to band birds.
Megan Kresse, GIS Technician
Megan is a graduate of Allegheny College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science & Sustainability. Her senior thesis was a suitability analysis for where to place honey bee hives on Ernst Conservation Seeds Property in Northwestern Pennsylvania and Northeastern Ohio. At Allegheny, Megan was a GIS research assistant, helping students with ArcGIS software as well as assisting in projects for Allegheny professors. In her GIS classes, she completed a project on wildlife bridge placement in Yellowstone National Park as well as another project determining the most suitable trail route at Wolf Run Farm in Pennsylvania. For the past two years, Megan has been a remote GIS intern for the MesoAmerican Research Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara, organizing data to create maps for the ancient Maya city of Tikal in Guatemala. Megan looks forward to working with WNY PRISM and using her GIS knowledge to provide a habitat suitability model of invasive species to prevent their potential spread.