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Mali Hubert

Research Interest

Disturbance ecology, fire ecology, plant community ecology, conservation biology, undergraduate education

Faculty Advisor(s)


Degree Pursuing



Pennsylvania State University- B.S. Biology, Minor in Statistics (2016)


Fire is one of the most powerful disturbances of natural ecosystems because it can reshape communities. In the southern Appalachian region, wildfire disturbances are considered rare, so opportunities to study fire effects are limited thus gaps exist in our knowledge of the ecological outcomes of large wildfires in the region. Currently, we are investigating understory plant communities affected by the 2016 Chimney Tops 2 fire at twenty plot sites in Gatlinburg, Tennessee and in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Our goal is to determine vegetation successional stages as the landscape recovers from fire, as well as the susceptibility of site locations to species dominance over time.

Awards and Recognitions

Alexander Hollaender Graduate Fellowship

Biology Teaching Award for Outstanding Instructional Achievement by a Graduate Student

Appalachian Highlands Science Learning Center Research Program

GSMCA Campbell Memorial Fellowship

Outstanding Outreach and Community Service Award

Breedlove, Dennis Award for Student Botanical Experiences

Graduate Student Senate Travel Award

2018 ORE Summer Graduate Research Assistantship

Hesler 2018 Herbarium Student Award