Project Leader

Josh Heitman

Josh Heitman
Professor and Faculty Scholar
3410 Williams Hall

Josh is originally from Webber, KS. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Agronomy from Kansas State University, and his Ph.D. in Soil Science from Iowa State University. He joined the faculty at NCSU in 2007. Away from the lab, he enjoys doing his best to keep up with his wife and three kids as they race between school, ball fields, and work.



Current Programs Members

Adam Howard

Adam Howard
Research Technician
3410 Williams Hall

Adam is originally from Union Grove, NC. He received is B.S. degree in Education from NCSU, minoring in Polymer and Color Chemistry and M.S. in Soil Science in 2014. He joined the Heitman Lab in 2007.



Yongwei Fu

Yongwei Fu, Ph.D.
Post-doctoral Scholar

Yongwei Fu comes from China. He majored in agronomy at Nanjing Agricultural University from 2009 to 2013. He then completed his master’s degree at China Agricultural University in 2016. His M.S. research focused on dynamic change of soil bulk density and thermal properties in the rootzone during maize growth. He completed his Ph.D. at NCSU in 2020. His current research focuses on assessment of soil structure through through measurement and modeling of soil thermal, electrical, and hydraulic properties.


Christina Kranz

Christina Kranz, Ph.D.

Christina is originally from Madison, Wisconsin and received her undergraduate degree from Ithaca College in environmental science. She then went on to completing her masters degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in soil science focusing in soil microbiology and ecology. Her PhD, completed in 2021 at NCSU, focused on using compost and tilling to improve soil physical properties and stormwater management in degraded soil on roadways.



Henrique Carvalho

Henrique Da Ros Carvalho, Ph.D.
Post-doctoral Scholar (Co-supervised by Alex Woodley)

Henrique is from Brazil. He received his B.S. degree from the University of São Paulo, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Texas A&M University. His research interests fall under the umbrella of environmental biophysics. He joined the Soil Physics Lab in 2020.



Md Mahfuz Islam

Md Mahfuz Islam, Ph.D.
Ph.D. Student (Co-advised by Rich McLaughlin)

Mahfuz is from Bangladesh. He completed his BS in Soil, Water and Environment, 2018 and MS in Environmental Science, 2021 from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. His MS research concentrated on the risk assessment of soil and sediment contaminations. He joined the Soil Physics Lab in 2021. His Ph.D. research mainly focuses on improving soil physical properties with composting and reducing the environmental impact of active road construction sites on the watershed.


Omoyemeh Ile

Omoyemeh Jennifer Ile
Ph.D. Student (Co-advised by John King)

Jen is from Nigeria. She received her Bachelor’s in Forest Resources Management from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria in 2015. She came to NC State in 2018 for a Master’s in Forestry and Environmental Resources and transitioned into the Ph.D. program. Her research focuses on the productivity of short rotation coppice culture trees (bioenergy trees) as an alternative source of energy, and the impacts of tree establishment on soil physical properties.


Karina Lenko

Karina Lenko
M.S. Student

Karina is originally from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She received her BSAg in environmental science from the University of Saskatchewan in 2022. Karina joined the lab in 2022; her master’s research focuses on best management practices for track-out from construction sites and management of diamond grinding slurry from highway resurfacing operations.


Zack Sheldon
Ph.D. Student

More to come soon…


Undergraduate Researchers

Purdy Dixon

Alex Pezold



Matthew Taggart, M.S. 2010 – currently Research Associate and Ph.D. Student, NCSU

Weinan Pan, M.S. 2010 – Ph.D. in 2015, Univ. of Delaware; currently private-industry R&D scientist (Pennsylvania)

Kim Whitley, M.S. 2011 – currently Agronomist with private firm (North Carolina)

Pukhraj Deol, Ph.D. 2012 – currently Extension Associate, Oregon State University

Jennifer Etheridge (honorary), M.S. in Animal Science 2012 – currently Research Assistant NCSU

Stephen Holland, M.S. 2012 – currently Soil Scientist with private consulting firm (Georgia)

Alan Meijer, Ph.D. 2013 – currently precision farming specialist with private company (North Carolina)

Adam Howard, M.S. 2014 – currently Research Technician in Heitman Soil Physics Group

Fatemeh Mohommadshirazi, M.S. 2015 – currently pursuing opportunities in private sector (Ohio)

Xinhua Xiao, Post-doc 2015 – currently Research Scientist at Alabama A&M University

John Lewis, M.S. 2016 – currently consulting Soil Scientist in North Carolina

Dejun Yang, Visiting Scholar 2016-2017 – Associate Professor at China University of Mining and Technology

Joseph Taylor, M.S. 2017 – currently with State Climate Office of North Carolina

Garrett Loyd, M.S.S. 2018  — currently with Pioneer

Tommy Stephenson, M.S. 2018  — currently Instructor for NCSU Bio and Ag Engineering

Wayne Roper, Ph.D. 2018  — currently with USDA ARS in TX

Zhengchao Tian, Post-Doctoral Scholar 2018  — currently Associate Professor at Huazhong Agricultural University

Abigail Haselton, M.S. 2019  — currently with Wake Soil & Water Conservation District

Caitlin Caudle, M.S. 2019 (honorary, advised by Osmond) — currently working with NC Soil & Water Conservation

Sunny Goh Eng Giap, Visiting Scholar 2019  — currently Lecturer Universiti Malaysia Terengganu

April Maxwell, M.S.S. 2020 — currently working in youth education

Shaddy Alshraah, Ph.D. 2020 — currently with Desert Control

Erin Rivers, Post-doctoral Scholar 2019-2020 — currently Assistant Professor at Utah State University

Yongwei Fu, Ph.D. 2020 — currently Post-doctoral Scholar at NCSU

Christina Kranz, Ph.D. 2021 — currently Post-doctoral Scholar at NCSU

Manuel Camacho, Ph.D. 2021 (honorary; co-advised by Ramon Leon and Travis Gannon) — currently Assistant Professor at University of Costa Rica

Cara Mathers, M.S., 2019, Ph.D. 2022 — currently with Indigo Ag.


Undergraduate Researchers

Matthew Taylor, B.S. 2013

Jared Dmisczewicki, B.S. 2015

John Lewis, B.S. 2015

Dorian Perez, B.S. 2015

Kelly Floro, B.S. 2016 (George Mason University)

Mary Santos, B.S. 2016

Stanford Borrell, B.S. 2017 (Stetson University)

Helen do Cruz Paschoeto, B.S. 2017 (University of Maringa, Brazil)

Kaitlyn Markey, B.S. 2018

Troy Saltiel, B.S. 2019 (University of Deleware)

Kimberlea Harrell, B.S. 2020

Jessica Herzog, 2022