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2020 Summer Interns

Western Summer Interns

Usually, the Bill Lane Center sends undergraduate interns all across the West: to the Yellowstone National Park Museum, to Washington Water Trust in Seattle, to the US Army Corps of Engineers in San Francisco. This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our students will be serving many of the same organizations around the West from the comfort of their own homes. They’ll be sharing their experiences on our Out West blog, so stay tuned! In the meantime, read on to learn a bit about this year’s cohort.

Program Information

Our western summer interns will be with organizations across the American West.


Greyson Assa

Water Innovation Intern, Washington Water Trust
Greyson Assa is a rising senior at Stanford majoring in the Earth Systems’ Oceans, Atmosphere and Climate track. He has long been mesmerised by the ebb and flow of water and has followed its drip from the mountain streams to the ocean depths. Understanding the movement of water and its ever-growing importance in our expanding society has lured him to the Washington Water Trust. He hopes that working with the Trust will catalyze his enthusiasm for the management and conservation of Earth’s most precious resource.

Zack Boyd

Communication and Conservation Intern, Henry's Fork Foundation
Zack Boyd is a rising senior at Stanford University majoring in Earth Systems, and is also enrolled in the Environmental Communication Master of the Arts program for this coming fall. He is passionate about folk music, writing, and dogs; usually, you can find him playing guitar or hiking with his two puppies. Throughout the summer, he will be designing content for Henry's Fork Foundation's social media and newsletters, and creating a catalog of the Foundation's previous projects.

Jess Dominick

Parks for People Intern, Trust for Public Land
Jess Dominick (she/they) is a rising junior at Stanford majoring in Architectural Design who is interested in the intersections between planning, justice, and sustainability. When she is not taking classes and reading about theory, she’s likely walking around somewhere outside, looking for mushrooms and taking photos of whatever cool bugs she can find. Along with her interest in environmental justice, she’s passionate about education and helping as many people as she can. As a first-generation, low-income student at Stanford, she’s constantly trying to make Stanford a better place for students who come from similar backgrounds. She hopes that working with Parks for People leads to making an impact in the Bay Area and fosters her passions for planning projects and community engagement.

Zora Ilunga-Reed

Zora Ilunga-Reed is a rising junior at Stanford majoring in Philosophy and Literature. She is a native New Yorker, but identifies as approximately 50% country mouse. When she’s not contemplating the strangeness of existence, she can be found reading anything by Zadie Smith or Joan Didion, writing articles for The Stanford Daily, or going on long, aimless walks. Her passion for finding creative solutions to climate change inspired her to work at the Natural History Institute. She’s excited to work on developing new forms of digital communication and programming for NHI in these unusual times.

Claudia Kania

Claudia Kania is a junior at Stanford studying Political Science and Computer Science. She is keenly interested in foreign policy and international economics, as well as democratization theory and human rights and development. Claudia was selected as a research fellow at the Leuphana Academy in Berlin studying distributed ledger technology and the international oil trade. At Stanford, Claudia can be found volunteering at Pride events and working at the ASSU student store on campus. She is very excited to be part of the NCSL internship program, and hopes that the opportunity will strengthen her grasp on domestic US politics while working to promote introspection within the political process.

Max Klotz

Research Intern, Galatée Films
Max Klotz is a graduating senior with a B.A. in Human Biology and a rising Earth Systems coterminous student. He is interested in environmental history and policy, particularly concerning public lands. Outside of his studies, Max is passionate about basketball, music, and the outdoors. This summer, he looks forward to researching 19th century music from the American West as an intern for Galatée Films.

David Ludeke

Resilient Landscapes Program Intern, San Francisco Estuary Institute
David Ludeke is a third year undergraduate majoring in Environmental Systems Engineering with a focus on Coastal Systems. He is especially passionate about ocean conservation and loves to drive down to Monterey Bay to scuba dive, visit the aquarium, or stop by the Hopkins Marine Station. His favorite quarter of college so far occurred this past autumn, when he had the opportunity to study abroad in Australia, learning through fieldwork in rainforests, coral reefs, and mangrove forests. He enjoys drawing and painting scientific illustrations (especially with watercolor), and will use his knowledge of scientific writing and research this fall to help his peers as a writing tutor at Stanford’s Hume Writing Center. Born and raised in the city of San Francisco, David is excited to be able to learnmore about the historical ecology of the San Francisco Bay. Through his work with the San Francisco Estuary Institute, he hopes to engage directly in efforts to better understand, restore, and preserve the critical ecosystems of his favorite home estuary.

Cameron Tenner

Planning and Policy Intern, US Army Corps of Engineers
Cameron Tenner is a rising coterm at Stanford University studying environmental engineering. He is from Glendale, CA and hopes to return after graduation to work on water infrastructure in the Southern California region. His passion for urban water resource planning and data visualization & communication fuels his enthusiasm to work with the US Army Corps of Engineers this summer. In his free time, Cameron enjoys hiking, creating and appreciating new media art, making bread, gardening, listening to podcasts, and watching movies.

Nina Wagner

Nina Wagner is a graduating senior and rising History coterm at Stanford majoring in Biology and minoring in History. Her combined interests in biology and history stem from her passion for veterinary studies and global studies. Outside of academics, she has enjoyed singing with multiple groups on campus, as well as working as a student ambassador for the Bing Overseas Study Program and driving for 5SURE. In her free time, she also loves to spend time outdoors, try new foods, and hang out with her cats. While she fell in love with Yellowstone during her first visit there and is sad not to be on site this summer, she is incredibly excited learn about the world of curation and to work with the amazing Yellowstone Heritage and Research Center staff.

Stanford Energy Internships in California and the West

Program Information

SEIC Internships are at agencies in California, Utah, and Colorado.

Mondee Lu

Mondee Lu is a JD-MS student in the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources. She discovered her interest in environmental, natural resources, energy, and climate work during her first year of law school and has been spending her graduate studies exploring various facets of these topics. She spent previous summers researching the role of environmental and tech policy in enabling sustainable development and the role of climate rights litigation within the larger climate movement. She's excited to spend this summer learning more about the ins and outs of energy policy and working on microgrid integration and energy resiliency at the California Public Utilities Commission in Commissioner Shiroma's office.

Sindhu Nathan

Sindhu Nathan is a third-year PhD candidate in Chemical Engineering. Prior to her time at Stanford, she researched strategies to improve the capacity, safety, and stability of lithium batteries at UT Austin. Her current research focuses on designing and characterizing materials that convert carbon dioxide to fuels and chemicals, an important part of the carbon capture and utilization cycle. She aims to apply her technical research background in energy materials towards developing policy solutions at the intersection of energy and the environment. Outside of research, Sindhu is involved with the Stanford community through the Chemical Engineering Graduate Student Action Committee and the Stanford Energy Club. In her free time, she loves to bake, read, or work on one of her many half-finished art projects. She is excited to gain experience working in the public sector, and to learn how energy decarbonization is accomplished at the state level.

Wenxi Zhao

Wenxi Zhao is a first-year M.S. student in Environmental Engineering. One year ago, she was an undergrad at the University of Waterloo, working on her thesis project about the attenuation of artificial sweeteners in a local reservoir. The research experience taught her about how remote sensing systems and data analysis can impact hydrology studies, and inspired her to take related courses. Right now, she is working on two projects. One is developing an apparatus that can turn bio-waste into biochar for water filtration or soil amendment, and the other is related to benchmarking the energy storage market. Through her internship at DWR, Wenxi hopes to understand the interplay of renewable energy implementation and traditional energy portfolios by engaging in the whole-spectrum assessment of integrating solar energy into the State Water Project. Learning from the state-of-art practice of rejuvenating traditional municipal utilities with renewable energy resources encourages her to think about decarbonization from a broader horizon.

Alex Evers

Undergraduate Intern, Western Interstate Energy Board
Alex is a second-year undergraduate student majoring in Earth Systems with a focus in Energy, Science, and Technology. He is incredibly excited to contribute what he has learned to his summer fellowship at the Western Interstate Energy Board. Alex is interested in remote off-grid solar installation and larger-scale energy policy reform. In the future, Alex plans to develop off-grid solar for isolated communities in the Himalayas. Alex is also interested in plant and animal conservation. He was able to participate in the Sophomore College program that went to the Galapagos to research methods on how to better manage isolated social-ecological systems. Beyond conservation, Alex is intrigued by how businesses and renewable energies interact, especially converting existing corporations that are built on fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.

Liqian Zhang

Liqian Zhang is a first-year M.S. student in the Environmental Engineering program in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford, and will join the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC). She has a B.S. degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Xi'an Jiaotong University in China. While her background is mostly technical, she is interested in the intersection of energy technology, policy, and the environment. During this internship at WECC, she is looking forward to helping analyze historical demand data and predicts future growth of electric loads in the western interconnection. She looks forward to applying her analytical skills and learning more about the possible decarbonization reached by existing energy policies.

Nathaniel Ramos

Undergraduate Intern, Department of Water Resources
Nathaniel Ramos is a junior majoring in Environmental Systems Engineering, with a focus on water and energy, and minoring in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. He’s from Watsonville, CA, and currently serves as a Resident Assistant. He is passionate about environmental justice in his home area and more broadly, having worked on safe drinking water issues in Monterey County last fall. He is excited to go from the local level to the state level, and he hopes to serve agricultural communities like his throughout his career. This summer, he will be working on modelling projects to best determine how the State Water Project can implement solar PV and battery storage in the pursuit of reducing its carbon emissions. On campus, he is on leadership for Students for a Sustainable Stanford and the Central American Students Association, and is a part of a student coalition supporting the protection of ecological sites that are of great spiritual importance to the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, upon whose ancestral land his hometown is built. In his extracurriculars and academics, he aims to develop a clear understanding of social inequities and justice frameworks so he can pursue sustainable, equitable solutions to environmental issues.


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