Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am originally from Pennsylvania, where I did my undergrad and master's at Villanova University, where I conducted field work on very cool little geckos in Angola and South Africa. I moved to the U of L from New York City, where I did my PhD at the American Museum of Natural History. Some highlights of this journey were working with some really fun snakes from the island of Madagascar, where myself and colleagues identified as many as 30 new species!
How long have you been at the U of L and what do you do here?
I joined the U of L in May of 2021 as a postdoctoral fellow of the Lee-Yaw lab in the Department of Biological Sciences.
What’s the best part of your job?
The best part of my job is getting to go into the field and look for the animals that I study! Before joining the U of L, this meant traveling to Madagascar and searching for snakes and now that I am in Alberta, fieldwork in my lab involves going to Castle Provincial Park and Waterton Lakes National Park to look for long toed salamanders. The most meaningful part of my work at the U of L is helping inform decisions about salamander reintroductions by Parks Canada - as a biologist, it is always amazing to see your research applied to conservation initiatives in real time.
What are you most excited about moving into the Fall semester?
The Lee-Yaw lab is fairly new, so this Fall semester I am excited to have our molecular lab up and running! We will be generating some new data for the project I am working on, and it will be very interesting to test our hypotheses about the genetics of salamanders in Waterton Lakes National Park!
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Outside of work I enjoy hiking, cycling, and looking for snakes (or lizards or frogs or salamanders)! If you ever find a cool snake on campus, come find me in the Water and Environmental Science Building because I would be very excited to check it out!