Our Story

Project AIR

Project AIR

Play Video


A student-created international effort, Project AIR (Action, Innovation, Research) works to break barriers in interdisciplinary efforts, focusing on scientific research to resolve social injustices. Established in July 2018 during a research program in collaboration with the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, we researched the possible presence of environmental injustice in Richmond, California by comparing air pollution concentrations. Through this experience, we felt that more action to address this social injustice was needed, prompting us to create Project AIR. Project AIR has raised over $5,000 for the Richmond Youth Council (an organization that collaborated with us in our research), hoping to aid them in continuing their program to engage youth through scientific investigation. Project AIR is dedicated to creating positive impact through education to promote health worldwide. 

Beach Clean Up with Sierra Club

Shorebird Park, situated along the southern shoreline at the Berkeley Marina      provides great views, the fascinating Shorebird Nature Center, picnicking sites, and children’s play areas. Cesar Chavez Park, built on the site of a former landfill, offers a wide range of recreational opportunities in a marina setting with spectacular views of the three bay bridges, Alcatraz, and Angel Island. Our students walked along the shore to hear about the history of the Bay and as volunteers this past summer, 2019. They participated in a beach clean-up activity to help make a  difference to our earth’s ocean through ​The San Francisco Bay Chapter Sierra Club, the local branch of the Sierra Club, America's largest and most effective grassroots environmental organization. 

Click Here to check out the Sierra Club website


Jessica An went to UC Berkeley and has took part in the research of Cumulative Exposures and Epigenetics. She enjoys hiking around the Bay Area, traveling to different countries, and spending time with her family and friends.

Charlotte Smith holds a BS in Microbiology from the University of Michigan, an MA in Community Health from the City University of New York, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Health Sciences from the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. Smith is currently a member of the faculty at UC Berkeley where she teaches "Introduction to Environmental Health Sciences and Drinking Water and Health", "Drinking Water and Health", "Honors Thesis Research Methods Seminar" and "Mapping the Human Right to Water". Her research interests is the microbial ecology of waterborne pathogens and the access to safe water as a human right . Dr. Smith has over 30 years experience solving drinking water quality problems: Before establishing Charlotte Smith & Associates, Inc. in 1994, Dr. Smith was employed by the New York City DEP-Drinking Water Quality Division, and then General Waterworks Corporation (the American subsidiary of Suez Environment), which at that time owned and operated 35 water utilities in 15 states. She was Director of Water Quality for GWC responsible for regulatory compliance for all 35 water companies. Dr. Smith was a member of a committee of the National Academy of Sciences that assessed the risk of post-treatment (distribution system) water contamination. She has several water industry awards including the "2001 Golden Spigot Award" and over 50 publications and presentations. Dr. Smith holds the 2016 Zak Sabry Distinguished Mentorship Award from the UC Berkeley School of Public Health.


Dr. Costello is an epidemiologist who focuses on occupational and environmental exposures and chronic disease. Dr. Costello earned her PhD from University of California, Los Angeles in epidemiology. Dr. Costello is currently a researcher at the Environmental Health Sciences Division in the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health.



Sadie Costello


Charlotte D. Smith

Dr. Asa Bradman is an environmental health scientist and expert in exposure assessment and epidemiology focusing on occupational and environmental exposures to pregnant women and children. He co-founded the Center for Environmental Research and Children's Health (CERCH) in the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and directs an initiative to improve environmental quality in California child care facilities. Dr. Bradman leads studies focusing on pesticides, flame retardants, metals, emerging pollutants, VOCs, indoor air quality, and other contaminants. He also participates in extensive community outreach and education, and interfaces with other scientists, state and federal agencies, policy makers, and industry. He participates on several advisory bodies and is currently chair of the California Biomonitoring Scientific Guidance Panel (appointed by Governors Schwarzennegger [2007] and Brown [2013]).

PhD, MSc

Asa Bradman

As the programs and policy director at the National Center for Science Education, Minda Berbeco works to defend and support the teaching of socially contentious but scientifically-sound topics like evolution and climate change in public schools. In her current role she often relies on her scientific expertise having earned a PhD in biology from Tufts University where she studied the impact of climate change on terrestrial systems. Berbeco has been published in Science, Scientific American, and NSTA'S, The Science Teacher.



Minda Berbeco


Jessica An

Our Mentors

Elizabeth M. Noth


Dr. Noth is an exposure scientist with a focus on spatial analysis. She splits her time between environmental exposure and occupational exposure research. In the environmental health field, Dr. Noth is currently engaged in field work and data analysis for childhood exposures to traffic-related air pollutants Exposure assessment, Air pollution, Occupational Health.


Ajay Pillarisetti


Dr. A Pillarisetti focuses on developing, updating, and validating measurement methods for a variety of parameters including using commercial devices to measure appliance use and helping to develop a next generation PM 2.5 monitor for household air pollution assessments. He spends a lot of time in R analyzing fairly large datasets and creating to ease household air pollution analysis.

Megan R. Schwarzman


Dr. Schwarzman earned her BA from Haverford College, medical degree from University of Massachusetts, and completed her specialty training in family medicine at University of California, San Francisco. She also earned her MPH in Environmental Health Sciences at University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health. Dr. Schwarzman now primarily focuses on green chemistry as well as chemical policy. She is currently a researcher and lecturer in Environmental Health Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health

http://sph.berkeley.edu/megan-schwarzman http://www.cleanproduction.org/about/profile/megan-schwarzman


Research Data Analyst. Advisor for UCB MPH program, analyst on environmental and occupational research, environmental & occupational epidemiology, MPH from Yale SPH: Environmental Health Sciences MPH Coordinator at UC Berkeley School of Public Health.


Liza Lutzker

James Nolan


Mr. Nolan graduated from UC Berkeley with a Masters of Public Health in 2016, specializing in social and behavioral contributors to health. He focuses on structural determinants of health disparities associated with race, class, gender and geography. Especially, in engaging youth to address multiple determinants of health, influencing environmental justice and harnessing local assets through community based participatory research (CBPR). He leads several youth participatory action research (YPAR) projects focusing on environmental health disparities. He coordinates community outreach, including website development, media relations, content generation, research translation and communications.

Mike Wilson


National Director for Occupational and Environmental Health at the BlueGreen Alliance. Dr. Wilson previously served as chief scientist for the California Department of Industrial Relations; as director and principal investigator of the University of California, Berkeley Labor Occupational Health Program; and as co-founder and associate director of the UC Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry. He served full terms as an appointee on California’s Green Chemistry Science Panel; Green Ribbon Science Advisory Panel; and Biomonitoring Science Guidance Panel. He was recently appointed to a labor seat with Cal/EPA’s Consultation Group on environmental justice, under AB 617 and AB 398.