Dr. Hull's dedication to safe water was ingrained by her Central Appalachian heritage, where creeks and streams were polluted by inadequate sewage management and irresponsible natural resource extraction.  During undergraduate research experience studying slow sand filters for microbial water treatment in developing countries, Natalie was captivated by the intersection of environmental microbiology and engineering.  The integration of these fields unites her past experiences and informs her research plans.  For her MS in Civil Engineering, she investigated mammalian toxicity of engineered nanoparticles.  As a post-graduate professional researcher, she explored microbial ecology and toxicity of water in built environments including tap water and hydraulic fracturing wastewater. For her PhD in Environmental Engineering, she studied molecular mechanisms of water disinfection by ultraviolet light and applications for rural and small water systems. 

Natalie is building on her convergent engineering and microbiology background, and graduate certificates in both teaching and mentoring, to inspire and educate students to sustainably engineer safe water for the health and enjoyment of current and future generations.  She is interested in applying emerging molecular biology tools, novel sensors, big data analyses, and optimized treatment technologies to better understand and control microbiomes in natural and engineered waters to protect public and environmental health.


  • Water Treatment
  • Water Quality
  • Environmental Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Ultraviolet Light
  • Water Microbiome