Nick Schulte

Nick Schulte

Postdoctoral Scholar

Departments / Academic Programs


  • PhD: University of Colorado Boulder, 2020
  • MS: Florida International University, 2016
  • BS: Tennessee Technological University, 2012

Research Programs, Labs, and Groups

Contact Information


Algal systematics, aquatic ecology, ecological assessment, microbial biogeography

Research Interests

Algae-based ecological assessment, algal-bacterial interactions, community ecology of stream and wetland biofilms, diatom ecology and systematics, microbial biogeography and dispersal mechanisms, species distribution modeling


Nick Schulte is a PhD student in Environmental Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder. Nick is investigating (1) ways to improve the use of algae in water quality monitoring and assessment in streams and (2) the processes underlying microbial diversity in aquatic systems. Nick’s research is grounded in three broad questions: (1) How can ecological complexity be translated to bioassessment diagnoses usable by ecosystem managers and policymakers? (2) What are the mechanisms that influence microbial metacommunity diversity over space and time? (3) How do anthropogenic disturbances (e.g., nutrient enrichment) affect microbial community structure and function in aquatic systems? Within this framework, Nick is researching algal species distributions along environmental and urbanization gradients in U.S. streams; molecular methods for identifying algal (specifically diatom) taxa; and wind dispersal of algae in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica. Nick’s research is applied within the context of improving algae-based ecological assessment of streams.

Nick received his MS in Biological Sciences at Florida International University, where he studied how phosphorus enrichment and spatial factors (e.g., dispersal) affect microbial community structure and function in benthic microbial mats in the Florida Everglades. He received his BS in Biological Sciences at Tennessee Technological University.


  • Grant in Aid of Research, Phycological Society of America, 2015
  • Charles W. Reimer Scholarship, Iowa Lakeside Laboratory, 2014
  • Hannah T. Croasdale Fellowship, Phycological Society of America, 2014
  • Grant in Aid of Research, Sigma Xi, 2014