After completing a B.A. in environmental science and geology from Middlebury College in 2011, Dr. Zolkos joined Woodwell as a research assistant. He became hooked on Arctic science on a trip to the remote Russian Arctic and became fascinated with the effects of permafrost thaw on ecosystems and climate. He pursued this interest through graduate studies in biological sciences at the University of Alberta in Canada, where his Ph.D. (2019) research investigated permafrost thaw effects on aquatic ecosystems and carbon cycling in the Yukon and Northwest Territories.
Dr. Zolkos is passionate about education and inspiring the next generation of scientists through involvement in initiatives like the Polaris Project. He finds engaging with students and interacting with local northern communities to be among the most rewarding aspects of his collaborative research to better understand northern ecosystem change.