Current Students

Russell Nasrallah

Research Interests:

Sediment transport, coastal erosion, sea level rise, coastal highway vulnerability, numerical modeling

R. Nasrallah won 2nd prize in the poster contest at the 2019 Environmental, Water Resources, and Coastal Engineering Graduate Student Symposium. View his award-winning poster.

R. Nasrallah was named as recipient of the 2018 Anchor QEA Scholarship, which is a scholarship fund to assist graduate students in fields related to water resources, surface and groundwater quality, coastal development, habitat restoration, and contaminated sediment management. Russell was one of six scholarship recipients selected from a group of highly qualified individuals. Applicants were from different universities located across the United States, studying in multiple program areas. His research is focused on developing a system to predict highway impacts from storms, in particular dune erosion and overwash, along NC Highway 12 on the Outer Banks.

Recent Ph.D. Graduates

Ayse Karanci, Ph.D.

Research Interests: 

Coupled human and coastal landform interaction,  Agent-Based Models for barrier island communities, climate change, sea level rise, dune erosion, numerical modeling of beach response to extreme events.

Liliana Velasquez Montoya, Ph.D.


Research Interests:

Morphological evolution of tidal inlets, sediment transport, coastal erosion, sea level rise, numerical modeling of beach morphodynamics.

Prospective Students

There are current research openings with the Natural Hazards Mapping Program for students at the Ph.D. and M.S. levels. Research assistantships in support of ongoing work focusing on coastal engineering response to sea level rise and the resilience of the built environment are available.

We also have a strong collaborative partnership with:

  • The Open Source Geospatial Research and Education Laboratory directed by Dr. Helena Mitasova within the department of Marine, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (MEAS) We collaborate extensively and work with students in both departments. The Open Source Geospatial Research and Education Laboratory researchers combine experiments, observations, models and geoinformation science to better understand how nature shapes land surface and how we influence it in both positive and negative ways.
  • Dr. Casey Dietrich who has developed and validated high-resolution computational models of hurricane waves and storm surge along the Gulf coast. These models have been used for levee design by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and for floodplain risk assessment by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
  • For more information please contact: Dr. Beth Sciaudone



Past Ph.D. Students

Velasquez-Montoya, L. “Observation and Modeling of the Morphodynamics of Tidal Inlets in the Northern Outer Banks of North Carolina“, 2018

Karanci, A. “Agent-based Model to Evaluate Housing Dynamics and Beach Management Practices of Coastal Resort Communities Facing Storms and Sea Level Rise“, 2017

Kurum, O. “Improved Post-storm Model Predictions of Barrier Island Response to Extreme Events by Including Land Cover Effects on Sediment Transport Capacity“, 2013

Marjani, A. “Advancement in Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics for Applying to Ocean Wave Energy Conversion“, 2013

Jin, Q. “Estimation of Coastal Evolution through Coupled Wave Modeling and GIS Techniques“, 2010.

Agarwal, P. “Bootstrapping of Spatially Correlated Data”, co-directed with M. Fuentes in Department of Statistics, 2003.

M.S.: Zink, Jason, “Using Modern Photogrammetric Techniques to Map Historical Shorelines and Analyze Shoreline Change Rates”, December 2002.

Murphy, Megan, “Estuarine Shoreline Erosion, Albemarle-Pamlico Sound”, North Carolina, August 2002.

Wright, Laurel, “Development of a Risk Index for Coastal Oceanfront Structures based on a Post-Storm Assessment of Topsail Island, North Carolina”, August 2001.

Judge, E. K. “3-D Remote Sensing of Coastal Morphologic Change: Accuracy, Analysis, and Predictors of Vulnerability”, 2001.

Delli Paoli, Michael, “Modeling for the Design of Protective Beach Dunes”, 2000.

Beisler, J. D., “An Analysis of the Coastal Area Management Act Erosion Rate Setback Regulation in Northern Dare County, North Carolina”, 2000.

Threatt, Brigit, “Data Input and Analysis of Coastal Erosion Hazard Areas Using Geographic Information Systems (GIS): Brunswick County, North Carolina”, 2000.

Krishnan, Badrish, “A Method for Evaluating Short-term Storm Induced Dune-Peak Recession”, 1999.

Ong, Mooi Lian, “The Prediction of Shoreline Movement on Pea Island, North Carolina”, 1998.

Martin, J. D., “Analysis of the Wet-Dry Line as and Indicator of Shoreline Position on a Sand Beach,” 1997.

Joyner, B. P., “Analysis of the Morphology of Oregon Inlet, NC since the Construction of the Terminal Groin”, 1997.

Hwang, K.-N., “A Predictive Model for Dune Erosion and Wave/Swash Hydrodynamics Across the Shore”, 1995.

Tyndall, R., “The Feasibility of the Use of Salt Marshes as Control Points in a Historical Shoreline Position Study,” December 1995.

Bruce, C., “Analysis of the Relationship Between Beach Surface Area and Volume at Duck, North Carolina,” December 1995.

Goris, S., “Worst Cast Fecal Coliform Impact Due to Marina Development on a Hypothetical North Carolina Estuary, May 1993.

Tseng, L. C., “Software Development in Data Acquisition for the Undergraduate Hydraulics Laboratory,” May 1992.

Pratikto, W. A., “The Relationship Between Dune Erodibility and Sand Grain Size and Dune Density,” 1992.

McAllister, T. L., “The Cumulative Impacts of Marinas on Estuarine System:  A Management Perspective,” 1992.

Whitman, E. J., “Sewer Networks:  Causes of Deterioration and Trenchless Rehabilitation Techniques,” May 1991.

Willis, C., “Modeling the Transport of Salt into Currituck Sound through the London Bridge-West Neck Creek System,” May 1990.

Pakan, D., “The Effect of a Channel Constriction on the Salinity of the Broad Creek Estuary,” 1989.

Yang, W.-H., “A Predictive Model for Estuarine Hydrodynamics and Salinity Distribution,” 1989.

Stone, A., “Analysis of the Effect of Grain Size and Compaction on the Stability of Sand Dunes,” 1989.

Fenaish, T. A., “Numerical Modeling of Wave Uprush and Induced Dune Erosion,” 1987.

Jones, R., “The Salt Wedge Interface in Non-Uniform Channels,” 1987.

Young, M. A., “Modeling of Storm-Induced Dune Erosion Due to Wave Uprush,” 1986.

Past MSCE Students

Clinch, A. “Evaluation of Hallermeier and Rhodes Methodology and Cross-Shore Numerical Model as Predictors for Beach and Dune Erosion for Flood Mapping Application“, 2013

Brown, E. “Visualizing Historic and Future Realizations of the Outer Banks of North Carolina using Geospatial Techniques“, 2012

Grant, B. P. “Exploring Renewable Wave Energy in North Carolina and its Impact on Coastal Processes“, 2012

Koser, M, “Dune Construction Guidelines”, 2002.

Past MCE Students

Ross Oliver

Brandan Scully