Hi everyone! My name is Jeffrey Imbrogno and I am from a small town called Ashtabula in Northeast Ohio. I earned my undergraduate degree from The Ohio State University, majoring in environmental economics & sustainability, specializing in business and sustainability.
During my junior year I had the opportunity to study abroad in Australia, where I spent most of my time volunteering with different non-profits with the goal of promoting and safeguarding the health of the Great Barrier Reef. The following summer, I worked in Tokyo, Japan for a company called Safecast, where we monitored and researched radiation data from around the world (with a focus on the effects from the meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant), primarily through sensor networks and citizen science initiatives. After these two experiences, it became evident that there was a disconnect between scientists, policymakers, and the general public. This creates a multitude of issues especially when the goal is to make effective legislation. This is what makes the EMAP program so innovative; we are learning not only the chemistry behind toxic environmental chemicals and how to measure them accurately, but also how to employ that data in a manner that creates sound, effective environmental policy. In an increasingly complex world, this ability has become extremely important, and the EMAP program is at the forefront. My favorite thing about the program, though, is how diverse our academic backgrounds and life experiences are. I have learned just as much from my peers as I have from the curriculum itself.
In the time since graduation, I was hired by the EPA, working in the Office of Research and Development. Within ORD, I am part of the National Program Manager for Regional Laboratories as a data visualization coordinator. The National Program Manager for Regional Laboratories (NPM) was created in 2019 to support EPA’s efforts to strengthen the Agency’s Regional Laboratories and to support the Laboratory Enterprise (LE). The NPM works closely with the Regional and other EPA Offices, to accomplish activities such as:
- Align the budget to support the regional laboratories
- Establish a performance metric to assess the responsiveness of the regional laboratories in meeting customer needs
- Increase internal and external awareness of the high-quality analytical services provided by the regional laboratories to the Agency, states, tribes, and local communities
- Identify priorities for improving the efficiency and effectiveness of LE operations.
As the data visualization coordinator, I deal with the various data the NPM receives, manipulating that data using RStudio, the ArcGIS suite of apps, Python, and other tools at my disposal. The EMAP program has prepared me for this through the various course offerings, particularly the classes with focus on R and Python. The program is very interdisciplinary, therefore my advice for current students is to narrow your focus in your second year when you start to pick your electives. I knew I wanted to incorporate machine learning and data analysis into environmental science and policy, so I picked my electives accordingly. That flexibility enabled me to hone in on the skills I needed.
If you have any specific questions and want to know more about EMAP, Georgetown, or living in D.C., don’t hesitate to reach out and contact me. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope to see you soon!