Meet the Team
Faculty & Staff
Dr. Lori Collins
Dr. Lori Collins is a Research Associate Professor and co-Director of the Digital Heritage & Humanities Center (DHHC) in the University of South Florida Libraries, and has a courtesy appointment in the School of Geosciences.
Dr. Collins teaches courses and workshops in Geosciences and in the Honors College, including Perspectives in Environmental Thought, Field Methods, 3D Printing, and Digital Museums. Her research specialties include heritage and landscape preservation and documentation strategies for archaeology. Her research focus has included heritage projects in Florida and the Southeast U.S., Mexico, Guatemala, Armenia, and Spain.
Her interests center on land management, preservation, and conservation practices, as well as interpretive development relating to heritage tourism. Much of her research has focused on Mesoamerican iconographic and rock art documentation and preservation, and LiDAR, GIS, and terrestrial laser scanning applications for archaeological visualization.
Noelia García Asenjo
3D Specialist – Noelia specializes in heritage documentation and visualization projects. She has more than 10 years of experience with 3D laser scanning and is a specialist with numerous 3D software and post-production tools including ZBrush, Maya, Adobe, and Autodesk platforms. Her work has included field and laboratory survey and digitization efforts at a number of World Heritage museums and archaeological sites, and she has conducted architectural surveys at a number of important locations in her home country, Spain and with the DHHC team internationally. She has worked in the DHHC supporting research and grant projects using 3D survey, laser scanning, and modeling, and helps to facilitate new approaches to digital library collections and applications.
Denise is a GIS Analyst for the DHHC, with expertise in LiDAR and remote sensing. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology from The University of South Florida in 2011, and a Graduate Certificate in Geospatial Information Systems from American Sentinel University in 2015. She began her career in GIS remote sensing, processing and editing digital orthophotography and LiDAR data. She has worked on numerous mapping projects for transportation and environmental services, as well as multiple countywide aerial orthophotography projects in the state of Florida. Her interests lie in new technologies for geospatial and remotely-sensed data.
Joseph Conrad, MA
Joe earned his Master of Arts in History with a concentration in 3D Preservation and Visualization Technology from USF in 2013. After completing his degree in 2013, Joe worked for the industry leading 3D scanning and engineering firm, Direct Dimensions Inc. in Owings Mills, Maryland. At Direct Dimensions, he learned 3D photogrammetry, 3D scanning with long-range and short-range tools, reverse engineering, product sales, and became a technology instructor. Joe has a variety of experience in many industries including aerospace engineering, mechanical engineering, art, defense/intelligence, museums, and Hollywood. As a 3D “Cyber Scanner”, Joe 3D scanned actors and movie sets for Captain America: Civil War (2016), The Greatest Showman (2017), Deadpool (2016), Deadpool 2 (2018), Ghostbusters (2016), among others. He taught 3D hardware and 3D software trainings for members of the US Army and the US Intelligence Community. He later took his expertise to the Smithsonian Institution’s Digitization Program Office as a 3D Digitization Specialist where he 3D scanned and modeled items in the Smithsonian collections including ivory tusks, East Asian coins, the Space Shuttle Discovery, and Neil Armstrong’s Apollo 11 Spacesuit.
Dr. Travis Doering
Dr. Travis Doering is a Research Associate Professor and co-Director of the Digital Heritage & Humanities Center (DHHC) in the University of South Florida Libraries, and has a courtesy appointment in the School of Geosciences.
Dr. Doering’s research specialties include rock art and material culture studies, geoarchaeology, Mesoamerican archaeology, Armenian Heritage, and applications for terrestrial laser scanning and imaging for heritage preservation globally. Dr. Doering has taught classes in the Department of Anthropology, including Mesoamerican archaeology and museum studies.
Along with Dr. Collins, he has been conducting laser scanning heritage projects for nearly two decades, and is considered one of the earliest adopters of the methods for archaeological applications in the US.
Garrett Speed, MA, GISP
Garrett earned his Master of Arts in Geography with a concentration in Geographic Information Systems from USF in 2016. His research focuses on Web GIS, remote sensing, GPS/GNSS, Python programming, and advanced photographic techniques including photogrammetry, reflectance transformation imaging, and gigapixel photography. He is a licensed FAA Part 107 UAV pilot and has been flying since 2015. In that time he has flown missions for international World Heritage site preservation in Armenia and Guatemala, has participated in forensic drone applications in Florida and Pennsylvania, and has worked on a number of archaeological and disaster response documentation applications across Florida. He is also the lab manager for the Digital Media Commons where he manages and designs software and hardware configurations, including for VR and 3D Printing Studios and GIS and computing space needs.
Christine Downs, Ph.D.
Christine is a Research Associate specializing in shallow geophysics. Her research focuses on the use of ground penetrating radar, electromagnetic induction, electric resistivity, and computer modeling to understand processes and features in the shallow subsurface. Applications for these methods have included identification of historic cemeteries, delineating historic structures, mapping wetland stratigraphy, and monitoring coastal groundwater processes. Her interests lie at the intersection of optimizing geophysical techniques and multidiscipline research. Christine earned her Ph.D. in Geology from USF in 2017.
Jorge González García
Jorge, who hails from Spain, began as an industrial designer, working in automotive and wind energy companies, where he developed skills in computer aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacturing (CAM). He was also a trainer for CAD/CAM engineering software in aeronautics, metal working, molding, and naval industries. He started heritage work in 2004 working for a new company that preserved and restored Spanish history and heritage using laser and 3D printing technologies. In 2008 he created his own company providing 3D scanning and documentation services for archaeological sites across Spain, including several UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Mr. Gonzalez is the DHHC lead in 3D modelling, laser scanning, CAD, and 3D printing.
Ben Mittler, MS, GISP
Benjamin Mittler is the GIS Project Manager who joined the DHHC team in November of 2018. He has professional experience working in GIS roles across multiple disciplines, having previously worked as a GIS Analyst with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection as well as the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. His interests include utilizing Web GIS to publish innovative stories and display unique datasets. Benjamin earned his Master of Science in Aquatic Environmental Science from FSU in 2014.
Jaime Rogers, MA
Jaime is an archaeologist with research projects and field experience in the southeastern U.S. and Mesoamerica. Jaime received his Bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies at University of Central Florida in 2015, where he focused in anthropology, environmental studies, and GIS. He also earned his Master’s degree in anthropology from UCF in 2019. Jaime is responsible for project management of archaeological surveys for the DHHC, preparing technical reports, and artifact analysis. Jaime also assists with field data collection involving 3D terrestrial data and GPS. He is an active member of the Florida Anthropological Society (FAS) and the current vice president of the Central Gulf Coast Archaeological Society (CGCAS). His research interests include historical ecology, shell geochemistry, ancient Tampa Bay, and GIS applications in anthropology.
Aaron is a Ph.D. student in the USF History Department. His doctoral work focuses on the post-Civil War memory of Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis, and “Stonewall” Jackson regarding their changing representations throughout the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century as they pertain to Confederate Nationalism and the emergence of the New South. His research also briefly examines the roles of Confederate monuments and memorials have played in the perpetuation of Lost Cause rhetoric in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Aaron is currently working with Dr. K. Stephen Prince, whose work involved the culture, society, and politics of the U.S. South in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Aaron previously attended Bowling Green State University in Ohio where he received a Master’s of Arts degree in American history in 2016 where he wrote a reexamination of Robert E. Lee’s military strategies in the battles of Antietam, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg.
Brianna is an undergraduate double majoring in History and Philosophy at USF. She has interests in ancient history and is concentrating her studies in moral philosophy, specifically ethics. Brianna joined the DHHC as a student intern in Spring 2018 and served as student research assistant for Dr. Collins’ interdisciplinary studies class in digital museums. Brianna has continued with the DHHC as a student researcher, assisting with collections, metadata and historical research. Brianna expects to graduate in 2019 and will be attending graduate school in the United Kingdom for her MA in international law and politics.
Sarah Mobley is a Ph.D. student with the structural research group at the University of South Florida where she has focused her attentions for the past two years on drilled shaft durability. She holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in civil engineering from the University of Alaska Anchorage and the University of South Florida, respectively. Mobley is a registered professional engineer in the state of Alaska and has more than 10 years of experience in civil design and contract administration. She spends all of her free time exploring Florida with her wonderful husband, Matthew.
Eric Koenig, M.A., is a USF student enrolled in the graduate certificate program in Geographical Information Systems. His research interests and professional aspirations focus on GIS-informed sustainable development, tourism planning, heritage conservation, public policy, and human and indigenous rights issues.
Over three summer seasons of research between 2013 and 2015 working toward his Master’s thesis in Applied Anthropology, Eric conducted a multi-method ethnographic study on the Placencia Peninsula, Belize, investigating local, national, and tourist conceptions of coastal heritage and their implications for community-based tourism and sustainable development initiatives.
Currently, he is working with the USF Library Digital Heritage and Humanities Collections on GIS investigations of historic churches and cemeteries in Hillsborough County, and has played an active role on the Florida COVID-19 case archives GIS project. In his spare time, Eric coaches cross country and track and field at a local high school and volunteers as a liaison on an afro-indigenous heritage museum project in a coastal Belizean village.
Liam is pursuing a B.A. in anthropology and works closely with the Anthropology Department and with the Digital Heritage and Humanities Collection at USF. His undergraduate thesis largely focused on the geometric and morphometric applications of three-dimensional scanning of the pubic symphysis from modern Portuguese populations for both bioarchaeological and forensic anthropological contexts. For the past two years Liam has been working with the DHHC team integrating GIS, time-lapse cameras, and other technology into the USF Institute of Forensic Anthropology and Applied Sciences (IFAAS) human decomposition facility. This collaboration has aided researchers at the facility with precise up-to-date maps of the facility and has also provided a multitude of educational and demonstrative material that highlights the research conducted there.
Zach has earned his M.S. Environmental Science and Policy at USF and is pursuing his Ph.D. in Geography and Environmental Science and Policy. He specializes in Geographic Information Science applications and ecological studies involving animal tracking data and worked as a scientist in environmental consulting performing Bald Eagle monitoring and Gopher Tortoise survey. Zach has experience performing field work and research with zoos and aquariums by tracking and identifying dolphins in Sarasota and developing 3D-mapping methods of orangutans. He also comes from a background in Anthropology, having studied in the Laboratory for Bioarchaeological Sciences at UCF to earn his B.A. His interests are 3D modeling of bone matter, wildlife ecology, and spatial science.
Kelly is currently a Structural Engineering Ph.D. Candidate at USF. She moved from Boca Raton on the east coast of Florida to Tampa on the west coast to attend USF in 2009. She went on to receive her Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering in 2014 and Master’s degree in Structural and Geotechnical Engineering in 2016 at USF. Her master’s degree included a thesis titled: The Full Scale Evaluation of Organic Soil Mixing. In her free time she enjoys kitesurfing and travelling.
Arwin Arun Swapna
Arwin is a second-year international student pursuing a bachelor’s in Computer Science at the University of South Florida. He is well versed in App Development and is currently working on engineering a Photogrammetry rig for the Digital Humanities and Heritage Collections (DHHC).
Before working on the Photogrammetry rig, Arwin worked on a joint project with the Digital Scholarship Services (DSS) and Digital Humanities and Heritage Collections (DHHC) to create an application to harvest (and organize) metadata via Sketchfab.com’s Data Application interface (API) for new/updated resources destined for submission for the DHHC 3D models Digital Collection. He is also the Electrical Technology Lead for the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and is working on creating a robust electrical system for the Chem – E car competition.
In his free time, Arwin enjoys going to the gym, capturing portrait photography, and is a cooking enthusiast. His long-term goals include learning new technologies and exploring the world of Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Kyutae "Simon" Ahn
Simon is a Masters student in Geosciences at USF and is graduate research assistant at the DHHC working on projects relating to GIS, drone implementation for disaster response and heritage management, LiDAR applications, and remote sensing. Simon, who hails from South Korea, is an international student with a strong background in surveying, GIS, and cadastral mapping. His thesis topic relates to disaster response modeling in GIS. He is a licensed FAA Part 107 UAV pilot, and is working to use reality capture and terrestrial LiDAR applications into his research.
Elizabeth’s research interests include community ecology, marine invertebrate zoology, 3D technology, and conservation and restoration ecology. As a graduate student in USF’s Department of Integrative Biology, she has the opportunity to incorporate 3D technology into marine ecology research by working with the Digital Heritage and Humanities Collections. Her dissertation research focuses on the interaction between the habitat architecture and community structure of oyster reefs. Utilizing 3D-technology, she has developed methodology to quantify refuge abundance and size within the oyster reef matrix. Elizabeth aims to determine specific habitat features that influence recruitment, survival, and organismal interactions.
Gianpiero Caso is a Ph.D. student in the USF Anthropology Department since 2015, when he was accepted in the program with a three-year scholarship. He earned his B.A. (2009) and M.A. (2014) in archaeology in Naples (Italy) and his Ph.D. dissertation focuses on the understanding of the technological aspects of pottery in use at two understudied and underrepresented indigenous sites in central Sicily. By using an interdisciplinary approach involving petrographic and chemical analyses, he examines the hidden social setting in which pots were manufactured by ancient communities, in order to promote a more diverse interpretation of the past. In 2019, he published his first scientific article and was awarded with the Rust Family Foundation Archaeological Grant. Additionally, he has been awarded by the Mediterranean Archaeological Trust (2017-2019) to perform radiocarbon analysis. Currently, his work with the DHHC is to create metadata information for the models, maps, images and videos, helping in the building of digital collections involving archaeological and heritage sites around the world.
Student Success Stories
MA in History
When Joe first arrived at the University of South Florida to earn my MA degree in History, his goal was to obtain a skill that would provide him with better employment opportunities. Joe began working with Dr. Collins, who also served on his research committee. Joe received a foundation in 3D software and hardware skills which he says gave him the confidence that he could learn any new 3D tool in the future. Dr. Collins provided industry connections for formalized internships and experiences for Joe, who went to work for 3D Systems, Inc.- at a leading 3D software company – as well as a stint with Direct Dimensions, Inc. of Maryland.
Joe says he developed an appreciation of collaboration working in the DHHC, since he often worked with students from the Departments of History, Anthropology, Engineering, and Geosciences. The knowledge and experience gained helped Joe to land a job with Direct Dimensions following his graduation, where he worked on visual effects for Hollywood films, 3D scanned objects for major pieces of
BA in Anthropology
Liam graduated with a B.A. in anthropology and worked closely with the Anthropology Department and with the Digital Heritage and Humanities Collection at USF. His undergraduate thesis largely focused on the geometric and morphometric applications of three-dimensional scanning of the pubic symphysis from modern Portuguese populations for both bio archaeological and forensic anthropological contexts. For the past two years Liam has been working with the DHHC team integrating GIS, time-lapse cameras, and other technology into the USF Institute of Forensic Anthropology and Applied Sciences (IFAAS) human decomposition facility. This collaboration has aided researchers at the facility with precise up-to-date maps of the facility and has also provided a multitude of educational and demonstrative material that highlights the research conducted there.
MA in Anthropology
The experience Chris gained, particularly his internship with the National Parks Service and assistance with Florida Parks Service projects, helped prepare him for a geospatial career serving both private and public sector clients. Currently focused on environmental resource management, he has conducted tasks such as supervised image classification, aerial photo interpretation, geographic
Ph. D. in Engineering
MA in Geography
Currently pursuing Ph. D. in Geography & Environmental Science and Policy
Kevin previously worked with the DHHC in areas of collections development and project metadata entry. Kevin earned his Master of Science in Environmental Science and Policy from the University of South Florida in December 2016, and is now in the School of Geosciences Ph.D. program, with interests spanning environmental, urban and regional planning applications, GIScience, and digital presentation and representation of data.
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