Angela Zoumplis

Christopher Newport University
Newport News, VA

Biology/Chemistry

Principal Investigator: Dr. Rachel Mastrapa
Project: Astrochemistry

Education and Experience:

My name is Angela Zoumplis and I am a senior at Christopher Newport University studying Biology and Chemistry. My research interests include a range of topics based around the discovery of extremophiles and the characterization of the environments in which they are found.

Located only 5 hours away from commercial and non-commercial caverns, I became fascinated with caving and the possibility of finding life forms in seemingly inhabitable conditions. I have worked directly in the field of microbiology with experiments surveying the caves. The collection of samples off the beaten path in lower levels of the cavern was an amazing experience in itself during the search for cryophiles. As an undergraduate, I further explored this research area in performing experiments for the Mariners' Museum where I was given the opportunity to classify microbes found in the 'Monitor artifact' tanks.

This interest has led me to the NASA Ames Academy where I hope to learn about the evolutionary history of microbes and their future on this planet and others. After I complete my undergraduate studies, I would like to pursue a PhD in Microbiology/Astrobiology and continue research at NASA.

When I am not making new friends in petri dishes, I love outdoors activities and watching the news. I am also interested in aspects of journalism and enjoy writing and producing for political satires and current event comedy.