My name is Jill McDermott. I am an Assistant Professor in the Earth and Environmental Sciences department at Lehigh University. Leading up to this, I was a MAGNET postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto, and am an alumna of the MIT-WHOI Joint Program in Chemical Oceanography (Ph.D), the University of New Hampshire (M.Sc.), and Dartmouth College (B.A.).
My research investigates the aqueous and volatile geochemistry and biogeochemistry of seafloor hydrothermal vents and ancient terrestrial fracture waters tapped by deep mines. These systems link fundamental geologic and biological processes that sustain microbial life in the largely unexplored deep subsurface biosphere, and they represent modern analogues of environments that may have played a critical role in the origin of life on the early Earth.
I use geochemical tools to reveal the origin of carbon and sulfur-containing compounds in deep vent and mine fluids. Are these compounds generated by living things, or can they form without any contribution from life?
I am looking for students and a postdoc to join my lab at Lehigh, and am always interested in new collaborations. Please get in touch!