Megan May is a doctoral candidate in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology-Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in Oceanography, working with Dr. Rebecca Gast. Megan’s dissertation focuses on characterizing and quantifying antibiotic resistance in the ocean. Antibiotic resistance is a naturally occurring process when antibiotics, which are chemicals that kill or stop bacterial growth, do not affect the bacteria. In the 20th century, humans began to utilize antibiotics, enhancing the amount of these chemicals and antibiotic resistance in the environment. Understanding the patterns that drive antibiotic resistance is important for the sustainability of human and environmental health.
Megan is also interested in policy and science communication. With this in mind, she is pursing a certificate in Science, Technology, and Policy at MIT and is working on a capstone project related to the policy of antibiotic resistance. She is also a member of the Broader Impacts Group (BIG), which focuses on science outreach to the public.
Megan received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology with minors in Spanish and Sociology from DePauw University in 2013. In her free time, she enjoys reading at the beach, touring local breweries, and volunteering at a cat shelter.