Spring, 2018

– Presented a poster entitled “Phenotypic and Genetic Decoupling of Thermal Hardiness across Metamorphosis” at the 59th Annual Drosophila Research Conference in Philadelphia, PA from April 11th – April 15th.


– “Ovary development and cold tolerance of the invasive pest Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura) in the central plains,” A collaborative publication with Elizabeth Everman, Ph.D. and a group of undergraduates, was accepted for publication in Environmental Entomology.

– I am also working on publishing my second chapter of my dissertation and looking for potential future positions after graduation.


Fall, 2017

– Published the first chapter of my dissertation as “Genetic Decoupling of Thermal Hardiness across Metamorphosis in Drosophila melanogaster” in Integrative and Comparative Biology.


Summer, 2017

– Gave an oral presentation entitled “Identifying mechanisms of cold hardiness across metamorphosis in Drosophila melanogaster” at the 7th International Symposium of the Environmental Physiology of Ectotherms and Plants (ISEPEP7in Tartu, Estonia.


– Traveled to Oulanka National Park, Finland to capture native drosophilids for further study with Gregory Ragland, Ph.D. and Edwina Dowle, Ph.D.



– Gave an oral presentation entitled “Identifying mechanisms of cold hardiness across metamorphosis in Drosophila melanogaster” at the  Ecological Genomics Summer Research Forum in Manhattan, KS.


Spring, 2017

– Awarded the Roger C. Smith Ph.D. Award in Entomology ($1,000) for singificant accomplishment for a student towards the end of their Ph.D.


– Traveled to the University of Colorado, Denver and the new laboratory of Gregory Ragland, Ph.D. for training in RNAseq model creation and data analysis in R with Edwina Dowle, Ph.D.



Fall, 2016

– Successfully passed my preliminary exams and received Ph.D. candidacy status.

– Taught an undergraduate course entitled “Insects and People,” which focused on how insects impact the lives of humans today and throughout history, with John Ruberson, Ph.D.


– Awarded the Don C. Warren Genetic Scholarship (1,000) for Fall 2016 and Spring 2017.


Spring, 2016

– Attended Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Conference in Portland, Oregon and gave an oral presentation entitled “Decoupling of physiology across metamorphosis” in the Larvae, Metamorphosis, and Life Cycles session.


– Competed in the KSU Department of Entomology’s 3 Minute Thesis Competition.



Fall, 2015

Presented “Decoupling of physiology across metamorphosis” during the KSU Department of Entomology’s seminar series and passed the thesis proposal step of the Ph.D. degree program.


Started the R user group at KSU with Gregory Ragland, Ph.D. and Brett Sandercock, Ph.D.

  • Taught introductory courses on R programming

– Presented a poster entitled “Evolution of complex life cycles: Is performance constrained across metamorphosis?” at the 13th Annual Ecological Genomics Symposium in Manhattan, KS.


Summer, 2015

– Presented “Ontogenetic constraint in the thermal physiology of Drosophila melanogaster: A genomic assessment of the adaptive decoupling hypothesis” at the Ecological Genomics Summer Research Forum at Kansas State University.


– Presented “Temporal Variation at Microsatellite Loci in Wild-Caught Drosophila simulans.” at the Arthropod Genomics Research Symposium at Kansas State University.

– Received certificate of completion for Quantitative Real-Time PCR protocol and diagnosis from Kansas State University.

– Received certificate of completion for RNA sequencing and gene expression analysis from Kansas State University.


Spring, 2015

– Awarded the Reginald H. Painter Memorial Scholarship for exceptional scholastic and research-based achievements.

– Awarded the Kansas State University chapter of Sigma Xi’s Grants-In-Aid-of-Research (GIAR) for submitted research proposal.

– Featured on KSDB 91.9 FM Wildcat Radio’s “What’s Happening in Your World” discussing the Sigma Xi GIAR award and science in general (click here to listen)

– Published Drosophila Muller F Elements Maintain a Distinct Set of Genomic Properties Over 40 Million Years of Evolution in G3-Genes Genomes Genetics


Fall, 2014

– Presented a poster entitled “Temporal Variation at Microsatellite Loci in Wild-Caught Drosophila simulans” at the 12th Annual Ecological Genomics Summer Research Forum

– Accepted a GRA position at Kansas State University, Department of Entomology

  • Pursuit of Ph.D. in entomology


– Recipient of the Timothy R.  Donoghue Graduate Scholarship.


Summer, 2014

– Successful Thesis Defense – Temporal Variation at Microsatellite Loci in Wild-Caught Drosophila simulans.



Spring, 2014

– Commencement: Received M.S. in Biology from Saint Joseph’s University

  • Recipient of the Biology Graduate Student Award
  • Inducted into Alpha Epsilon Lambda – The Graduate Students Honor Society


– Appeared in SJU Intellect Magazine, Spring 2014: Dangerous Invaders: Researchers Embark on Study of Asian Fruit Fly

  • A magazine article discussing the recent migration of Drosophila suzukii and the multiple studies at Saint Joseph’s University aimed to better understand this invasive pest.


– Appeared in MAJR Magazine: How My Major is Making a Difference.

  • An article in the Spring, 2014 edition of MAJR Magazine concerning community outreach, and the GeoKids LINKS program, at Saint Joseph’s University.

– Presented a poster entitled “Temporal Variation at Microsatellite Loci in Wild-Caught Drosophila simulans” at the Sigma Xi Research Symposium at Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia.



Fall, 2013

– Appeared in Glow Better: Students and Faculty Collaborate to Study Fruit Pest

  • An article concerning a collaborative, multi-faceted research effort at Saint Joseph’s University to study Drosophila suzukii – a new, invasive fruit fly pest in Pennsylvania.

– Published An Efficient, Practical, and Reliable Drosophila Trap in Drosophila Information Service.


Spring, 2013

– Published my first scientific paper: “Drosophila suzukii, or Spotted Wing Drosophila, Recorded in Southeastern Pennsylvania, U.S.A.” In Entomological News.


Fall, 2012

– Accepted as graduate student (masters) in the Department of Biology at Saint Joseph’s University

  • Also started my position as a GeoKids LINKS GK-12 Fellow



Summer, 2012

– Attended the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB)’s Plant Biology meeting in Austin, Texas from July 20th to July 24th and collaboratively produced and presented a poster entitled “Genomic regions responsible for altered reproductive characteristics of Arabidopsis thaliana grown at elevated [CO2]”

2012-07-20 12.05.15.jpg


Spring, 2012

– Presented a poster entitled “Drosophila Biodiversity on the Campus of Saint Joseph’s
University” at the Sigma Xi Research Symposium at Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia.



Spring, 2011

– Presented a poster entitled “Computational Study of Flowering Time Genetics with
QTL Cartographer” at the Sigma Xi Research Symposium at Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia.

Sigma Xi


Fall, 2010

– Appeared in Look Who’s Going Back to School (May have to reload once after clicking)

  • An article in SJU Magazine’s Fall 2010 edition highlighting returning students and their stories. (See page 16)


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