Virginia Tech® home

Charles W. Sterling III

IGC FELLOW    |   Global Change Center

Ph.D. Student  •  Biological Systems Engineering

Research Interests: Private well water quality, Environmental Justice

Advisor: Dr. Leigh-Anne Krometis


Sterling graduated from North Carolina A&T State University with a bachelor’s degree in Biological Engineering, and is now working on his Ph.D. in Biological Systems Engineering with a focus on private water quality. For the last several years, his research interests have revolved around environmental justice issues. Recently, especially with the occurrence of the Flint Michigan Crisis, he’s been excited about the idea of providing clean water to communities in need.

Sterling was born and raised in Ashburn, Virginia, and has a strong drive to help others. His passion for science began at a young age, cultivated by his parents’ influence to participate in science camps and by his teachers’ encouragement to pursue a science major in college. 

As a member of the Interfaces of Global Change program, his goal is to create a project that will help with the water quality issues in Appalachia. Sterling’s hope is that the methods used to solve this problem will be useful in solving similar problems worldwide.