SAEON Graduate Student Network

2020 Committee Members

Corianna Julie

Corianna Julie is a master’s student at Nelson Mandela University, Port Elizabeth, at the Elwande Node. Her study focuses on mangrove responses to tidal inundation and sediment accumulation at two study sites; the Nxaxo and St Lucia estuaries, supervised by Professor Janine Barbara Adams, Dr Taryn Riddin, and Dr Jaqueline Raw. She hopes that this study will provide an idea of how the intertidal environment will respond amidst sea level rise and climate change. Originally from the Seychelles, Corianna is purely an “island baby” being happiest where there is sun, sea, sand, and lots of greenery! This spurred her love for the environment and she therefore aspires to aid in bridging the gap between science and the community so as to have a holistic approach to environmental conservation to combat climate change. Outside academia, Corianna loves going to the beach, travelling, and interacting with people

Craig Mahlasi
Deputy Chairperson

Craig Mahlasi is a PhD student at the University of Cape Town in the Statistical Science department and is affiliated with the SAEON Fynbos Node. Craig is passionate about using Earth Observation data and techniques in studying environs, His research is titled “Near-real time change detection in the Subtropical Thicket Biome”, supervised by Dr Glenn Moncrieff. The project looks at using Earth Observation data to detect and document vegetation clearing in the Subtropical Thicket Biome. When not working on he’s PhD, Craig spends time skating and cycling.

Lindokuhle Dlamini
Indibano Logistics Coordinator

Lindo is a PhD student registered at the University of Free State (UFS) and the University of Burgundy (UB), Dijon, France (a joint PhD program). His PhD project focuses on soil carbon dynamics of montane species-rich grasslands, cathedral peak, Drakensberg, South Africa. The general aim is to investigates the effect of fire, vegetation heterogeneity, and climate variability on soil carbon dynamics at a catchment scale, through examining subsoil horizon carbon pools, soil respiration, soil carbon fractions (stable/active), δ13C isotopic signatures, and contribution of pyrogenic organic carbon (ash and charcoal) on carbon sequestration. He firmly believes that through scientific research in ecology and environmental sciences, new strategies for conservation and management of our natural resources will be developed and those will cater for estimated climate change impact. He is also a professional photographer.

Marlize Muller
Internal Stakeholder Communications

Marlize Muller is a PhD student registered at the North-West University (NWU) and is affiliated with SAEON, Ndlovu Node. Her research focusses on grassland diversity and functioning under increased climate and land-use change. More specifically she is making use of an existing floristic dataset covering several land-use types across the Grassland Biome of South Africa. Furthermore, SAEON has a large number of long-term datasets in the critically endangered Woodbush Granite Grasslands (WGG) that she will be using in her studies. She is supervised by Dr Frances Siebert (NWU), Dr Anja Linstädter (University of Cologne), Dr Dave Thompson (SAEON) and Prof Stefan Siebert (NWU). She is passionate about grasslands and the natural environment in general and hopes to contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of these systems.

Amukelani Maluleke
External Stakeholder Communication

Amukelani Maluleke is a PhD student with the Extended Freshwater and Terrestrial Earth Observation Network, registered with Stellenbosch University under the supervision of Prof. Guy Midgley (Stellenbosch University), Dr Gregor Feig (SAEON/EFTEON) and Dr Christian Brümmer of Thünen Institute in Germany. He was born and raised in Soweto. He completed all of his previous studies at Wits University where he acquired a background in Geography and Air Quality. Over the past two years he has been introduced to Eddy Covariance measurements during his internship with the Council of Scientificand Industrial Research (CSIR) through the NRF internship program. This has provided him with the links to EFTEON where his PhD seeks to quantitatively understand carbon, water and energy exchange in semi-arid ecosystems, mainly the Savanna and Nama-Karoo biomes using Eddy Covariance flux measurements and remotely-sensed vegetation products. He is a hobbyist photographer with a liking to landscape and wildlife photography.

Nasreen Burgher
External Stakeholder Communications

Nasreen is in the process of starting her Msc in Physical Oceanography at Nelson Mandela University. Her project will focus on mesoscale aspects of the Agulhas current along the east coast of South Africa. She is currently interning at SAEON, Egagasini Node. Her internship covers activities around physical oceanography, biodiversity, science-based education outreach, as well as research and policy interface for the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA). She has experience on several research cruises to Marion Island, the Southern Ocean and along the coasts of South Africa. As a result, she has acquired various data collection and analytical skills. Nasreen has always been involved in community work and is interested in understanding the role science plays in positively influencing society. In her spare time, she enjoys snorkelling, reading and good food.