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About Paula Furey, PhD

I am a freshwater ecologist, with expertise and interests that span phycology (algae), invertebrate biology, taxonomy, biodiversity, and conservation biology. My research centers on the ecology of aquatic ecosystems (lakes, rivers, streams, wetwalls), especially benthic (bottom) communities and algal assemblages. I focus my research on trying to understand what shapes and controls the structure and function of biotic communities and ecosystems, and on using ecology to find better ways to monitor, protect and predict changes in aquatic ecosystems. Visit my lab website:


Present Associate Professor, St. Catherine University Biology Department


2021 - Present Assessment of water quality using a modern method to monitor algae.
St. Catherine University -
Summer Scholars; AMP
Role: PI; Student Research Collaborator Mentor
Colleague(s): Student Research Collaborator - Sydney Kennedy
2018 - Present Acquisition of a fluorescence microscope to grow research and training of women from diverse multicultural and economic backgrounds at St. Catherine University
Major Research Instrumentation Grant
Role: PI
Colleague(s): Tami McDonald, Andrea Kalis, Kay Tweeten
2019 - 2020 Algae in a warming and nutrient rich world: How temperature and nutrients interact to change species-assemblage structure and function.
St. Catherine University
Role: PI
2019 - 2020 Invasion of Lionfish on the Caribbean Island of Curaçao Impacts Reef Ecology
Role: PI
Colleague(s): Student Research Collaborator - T. Trettor
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Professional Service and Affiliations

2021 - Present Society for Freshwater Science - Diatom Taxon Page Workshop - Co-Organizer, Society for Freshwater Science
2021 - Present SHAS - School Curriculum Committee, St. Catherine University
2019 - Present Editorial Review Board, Diatoms of North America
2019 - Present Data Science Advisory Council, St. Catherine University
2019 - Present Peace Corps Program Committee, St. Catherine University
2018 - Present Member; Secretary, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, St. Catherine University
2018 - Present Environmental Studies Major Development, St. Catherine University
2015 - Present Admission Representative, Biology Department, St. Catherine University
2019 - 2020 Mendel Hall – Renovation Advisory Committee, Department of Biology, St. Catherine University
2017 - 2020 APDC Committee, Department of Biology, St. Catherine University
2012 - 2020 Surface-Associated Microbiota Literature Review section leader, Water Environment Research
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  • Environmental Biology
  • Algal Blooms and Biological Indicators
  • Conservation Biology
  • Algal Ecology
  • Foundations of Biology 3
  • Foundations of Biology 1


2008 Ph.D., Biology, Bowling Green State University
2003 Masters of Science, Biology, University of Victoria
1997 BS. Biology, & Environmental Studies, University of Victoria

Contact Information

Phone: 651-690-8653


Publications (30)