Christine Atkinson, a researcher with the Bondville Environmental Research Site at the Illinois State Water Survey, recently answered a few questions about her career.
In one sentence, what do you do?
I started my work at the Bondville Environmental Research Site when I was working in
Laboratory Accreditation at the Central Analytical Lab. Now I do weekend checks to see that all
the monitoring equipment is working well. I am also pursuing a Ph.D. in the Department of Food
Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois where my research uses microalgae
and systems biology to meet needs within the food industry.
How does your work at the Water Survey impact Illinois?
The Bondville Environmental and Atmospheric Research Site collects research data for the
Illinois climate. This data is available to the citizens of Illinois for analysis and for making
informed decisions about atmospheric trends.
What is your educational background/area(s) of expertise?
My educational background is in Bacteriology, Nutritional Science, Food Science, and Quality
What is the best part of your job at the Water Survey?
The best part of working at Bondville is the peacefulness of machines collecting environmental
What work/project/outcome are you most proud of?
I am thankful that I was able to use my laboratory accreditation knowledge within an
How old were you when you first became interested in science? What sparked your interest?
My dad taught biology classes and I would visit his laboratory at work. I always thought that
science classes were the best way to learn how the world works. My first class in microbiology
was my favorite because of the endless opportunity to learn about new microorganisms.
What else would you like to share about your work at the Water Survey?
I think the Bondville Site is a great opportunity for new research collaborations that study
climate monitoring and agricultural productivity.