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Home » Discover Rackham » Student Spotlight: Sherri Cook

Sherri’s dissertation examines the fields of waste management and water management, using environmental biotechnology models to answer important questions. Specifically, one aspect of her research focuses on how to best dispose of unused pharmaceuticals, examining the entire system, including issues of sustainability, environment, social ramifications and cost. Her goal is to determine what is the best decision for the environment and society. This research also aims to improve our understanding of technologies that meet sustainability standards but are not reliable across a wide range of applications and integrate systems and life cycle thinking with design methodology and treatment process models.

“I came here because of the strong faculty in the field. UM is ahead of the curve in sustainability – classes research and practical implementation.” Adding to the faculty and program, she’s found a home in the graduate community here. She’s part of an informal PhD group where they talk about challenges and issues and support each other. “I love the network I’ve been able to create here at Michigan.”

Almost ready to graduate, she defends her dissertation this spring and will begin as an Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado in Boulder the fall. There, she will focus her research on the issue of creating energy stability in waste reclamation.

She participates in a lot of social events sponsored by Rackham. “I’m happy by how popular they are. I’m glad for a chance to congregate with other graduate students. They have unique experiences and she’s happy for that community. Graduate work, especially research, can be isolating. It is nice to have a community of people to rely on.”