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Paul McGinleyPaul McGinley, Ph.D.

Director of the Center for Watershed Science and Education

Contact Information
(715) 346-4501
Office: TNR 224F

Curriculum Vitae


I am the Director for the Center for Watershed Science and Education and Professor of Water Resources in the College of Natural Resources. My teaching, research, and outreach focuses on evaluating and improving water quality. This includes trying to reduce the movement of nutrients from land to surface water, determining how nutrients impact water quality in our lakes and streams and improving our water/wastewater treatment technologies to be more efficient and effective. I explore how we can use computer simulation models, innovative monitoring, and advanced control systems to understand and manage our water resource systems.     

  • Ph.D. The University of Michigan, Environmental Engineering
  • M.S. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Water Chemistry
  • B.S. University of Wisconsin, Madison, Soil Science and Civil and Environmental Engineering

Professional Society Involvement

  • American Water Works Association
  • North American Lake Management Society
  • Registered Professional Engineer (WI)
  • Water Environment Federation
Courses Taught
  • Water and Wastewater Treatment
  • Constructed Wetlands for Water Quality Control
  • Advanced Analytical Instrumentation
  • Introduction to Soil and Water Resources
  • Water Quality Modeling (Continuing Education)
  • Using the P8 Urban Catchment Model (Continuing Education)
Publications and Presentations

Nitka, A.L., DeVita, W., McGinley, P.M. 2019. Evaluating a Chemical Source-Tracing Suite for Septic System Nitrate in Household Wells. Water Research 148:438-445. 

“What is the Water Telling Us about the Land?”  Presentation at the Wisconsin Lakes Partnership Convention, 2018.

“Can You Test That?”  Presentation at the Wisconsin Land and Water Association Annual Conference, 2017.

McGinley, P.M., K.C. Masarik, M.B. Gotkowitz, D.J. Mechenich. 2016Impact of anthropogenic geochemical change and aquifer geology on groundwater phosphorus concentrations.  Applied Geochemistry 72:1-9,

Brodzeller, J. and P. McGinley. 2016.  A CE-QUAL-W2 Model for Dissolved Oxygen in the Big Eau Pleine Reservoir, Wisconsin to Understand and Manage Winter Anoxia.  Report from the Center for Watershed Science and Education, UW-Stevens Point.  59 pp.

McGinley, P.M., W.M. DeVita and A.L. Nitka.  2015.  Evaluating Chemical Tracers in Suburban Groundwater as Indicators of Nitrate-Nitrogen Sources.  Final Report for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.  48 pp.

McGinley, P., J. Hall and V. Ianiev.  2015.  Benchtop Sequencing Batch Reactors: Experiences and Opportunities in Education and Applied Research.  Poster presented at the Central States Water Environment Federation Education Seminar, Madison, WI.

McGinley, P.M., A.T. Freihoefer and R.S. Mentz.  2013.  Runoff Curve Numbers at the Agricultural Field-Scale and Implications for Continuous Simulation Modeling.  Journal of the American Water Resources Association 49:1436-1443.

McGinley, P.  2012.  How did that get in the water?  An Update on Pharmaceuticals and Other Human Products in Lakes and Groundwater.  Lake Tides 37(3) Summer/Fall 2012 available online:

“Toledo, Gulf of Mexico and a Lake Near You: Making the Connections between Runoff, Erosion, and Algae.”  presentation at the NASECA-WI (North American Stormwater Association-Wisconsin Section) Field Day, Rice Lake, Sept 25, 2014.

Current Research Interests and Projects
  • Wastewater, Stream and Groundwater Phosphorus
  • Emerging Compounds as Hydrologic Tracers
  • Wastewater Treatment Laboratory Pilot Testing
  • Water Quality Simulation Modeling
  • Sensor Development
  • Wetland Flood Attenuation
  • Hydrodynamic Modeling of Lakes


Hiking, fishing, and camping


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