Serena Xu | 2017 | Interns

Serena Xu

Serena Xu (’19)

Seattle, WA

Dana Mead Intern

Mathematics with Computer Science Major

Environmental Protection Agency

This summer I worked at the Environmental Protection Agency, in the Office of Water. The main focus of my division in the EPA is running the Water Quality Standards program, which regulates the levels of various pollutants in surface waters of the U.S. I laid the groundwork for an effort to communicate fish advisories with Native American tribes, by researching and reporting on the scope of the problem and compiling a centralized dataset of the fish advisories that are relevant to each tribe. I also got to observe the progress of and make a small contribution to several other projects, including a joint project with NASA, USGS and NOAA to monitor harmful algal blooms using satellite data; a project to assess cold water refuges for migrating salmon in the Columbia River, in particular how they will be affected by climate change; and the EPA's monthly fish newsletter. I had an awesome summer, insightful, life-informing, and just fun as hell. MIT DC summer internship program, 5/5 stars would buy it again!