Rebecca Ventura
PhD Student
Civil Systems • Global Engineering

428 UCB
ECCE 153
Boulder, CO 80309-0428

Rebecca is a second-year PhD Student in Civil Systems Engineering focusing on household-level sanitation system design and implementation.  She is co-advised by Amy Javernick-Will and Sherri Cook. Her research interests include household needs addresment in rural and urban international sanitation systems, motivating improved sanitaiton use, and sustainability. She first discovered her passion for international sanitation systems after visiting Ecaudor in 2015. After completing her PhD, Rebecca aspires to be a professor working in areas of sanitaiton and urban development. 

Why I chose to get a PhD: When thinking about my future career, I knew I wanted to pursue complex, interdisciplinary problems in areas of international development and wastewater. As an undergraduate student I loved the academic environment where I could learn, mentor, teach, and conduct research each week. I chose to pursue a PhD because I want to improve water and sanitation in the international context and develop the skills necessary to become a professor and mentor. 


  • BS in Civil Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2017


  • Recipient of the Graduate Assistantship in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Fellowship, 2019


  • Adding New Sanitation Services to Increase Access and Motivate Improved Sanitation System Use, Poster Presentation, CO WASH Symposium, March 2021
  • What makes toilets aspirational?, Three Minute Thesis Competition, Clean Water Science Network Seminar, June 2021