Bret M. Webb, Ph.D., P.E., D.CE
University of South Alabama
150 Jaguar Drive, SH3142
Mobile, AL 36688 USA
Phone: (251) 460-6174
Fax: (251) 461-1400

Research Positions

Currently seeking multiple graduate students to fill positions at the MS, PhD, and Postdoc levels. Research topics include: living shorelines, beach and tidal inlet dynamics, barrier island response to extreme events, groundwater impacts to coastal lagoons, and infrastructure resilience. Research assistantships are available. Click here for more information.

Current Research Assistants

PhD Students
Garland Pennison


MS Students
Kelsey Carpenter
Sean McQuagge
Elizabeth Winter
Jackie Wittmann


Undergraduate Students
Ian Cox

Former Students

MSCE Students
Patrick Hautau (2018)
Marshall Hayden (2018)
Kate Haynes (2018)
Justin Lowlavar (2017)
Bryan Groza (2016)
Kari Servold (2015)
Chris Marr (2013)
Richard Allen (2013)
Miyuki Matthews (2012)


Post Docs
Jon Risinger
Jungwoo Lee

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We have two new research projects starting soon and both provide funding for research assistants at various academic levels. One of the projects, funded through the RESTORE Act, will focus on the hydrodynamics and water quality within a coastal lagoon. That project will involve fieldwork and hydrodynamic modeling and will support one MSCE student and one postdoc position. The other project, funded by the US Coastal Research Program, aims to develop systems engineering approaches that improve community resilience to coastal hazards. That project will support two PhD students in our Systems Engineering program. Position requirements are summarized below. Those interested in the positions below should send me a cover letter and resume/CV by email ( Please be sure to state in your cover letter which position you are seeking.

  • Postdoc Position (1): The ideal candidate will possess a PhD in coastal engineering, oceanography, marine science, or a closely related field. Candidates should have a strong background in programming (e.g., MATLAB, R, Python, etc.), GIS, spatio-temporal data analysis, and the ability to prepare and apply hydrodynamic models. Familiarity with Delft3D is preferred but not required. This position will be expected to assist with fieldwork (in/on water).
  • PhD Positions (2): The ideal candidate will possess a MS degree in coastal engineering or a closely related field. Acceptable candidates will have some knowledge of contemporary coastal resilience issues, extreme events, climate change, and civil engineering infrastructure. Experience with programming (e.g., MATLAB, R, Python, etc.), familiarity with GIS, and a strong background in probability and statistics are required. Some experience applying hydrodynamic models is preferred but not required. Students should understand that their PhD will be in Systems Engineering with an emphasis on the natural and built coastal environments. These positions are limited to US citizens only.
  • MSCE Position (1): The ideal candidate will possess a BS degree in civil engineering, environmental engineering, marine science, or closely related field. A complete understanding of probability and statistics is necessary. The ability to perform fieldwork (in/on the water) is required for this project. Familiarity with programming, GIS, modeling, data analysis, and research experience are preferred but not required.