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Graduate Students

Note: we have a separate page listing recent graduates.

Robin Abraham
Doctoral candidate
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research Interests: Amphibian life history & behavior, Biogeographic patterns
Hometown: Thiruvananthapuram, India

Abdelkafar Alkishe
Master's student, EEB
Dyche Hall

Adviser: Town Peterson
Research interests: Ecological Niche Modeling (Disease Modeling)
Hometown: Tripoli, Libya

Katie Allen
Doctoral aspirant, EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisers: Rafe Brown and Town Peterson
Research interests: Phylogeography of Central African reptiles
Hometown: Jefferson City, Missouri

Emily Arsenault
Doctoral aspirant
Higuchi Hall (Kansas Biological Survey)

Advisor name: James Thorp
Research Interests: Food webs, stable isotopes, macrosystem ecology
Hometown: Branford, CT

Kyle Atkins-Weltman
Master's student
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Richard Glor
Research Interests: Snake color and pattern genetics
Hometown: Milton, Massachusetts

 

Steve Baca
Doctoral candidate, Entomology
6028 Haworth

Advisor: Andrew Short
Research Interests: Systematics of Noteridae (Coleoptera)
Hometown: Alburquerque, NM

Naomi Betson
Doctoral Aspirant
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Bryan Foster
Research Interest: Restoration ecology, phenology, global change, invasive species
Hometown: Nashville, Indiana

Doctoral candidate
3038 Haworth Hall

Advisor: Dr. Deborah Roan Smith
Research interests: Honey bees (biology, foraging ecology, and beekeeping development), bee systematics, exotic vs. native species competition, and Human and bees (Ethnobiology)
Hometown: Kathmandu, Nepal (till 2009); Toronto, Canada (2010-2013): Lawrence, KS (2013-2018), and Next???

Keely Brown
Doctoral candidate
Haworth 5007

Advisor: John Kelly
Research Interests: Maintenance of flower size variation in Mimulus guttatus; Self incompatibility in Tolpis
Hometown: Spokane, WA

Haley Burrill
Master's student

Advisor: Jim Bever
Research Interests: Plant-microbe ecology, mycorrhizal and pathogen influence on plant ecology and community dynamics
Hometown: Irivine, California

Steven Ray Byrum
Master's student EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Bruce Lieberman
Research interests: Paleontology and evolution
Hometown: Chula Vista, CA

Master's student
8022 Haworth

Advisor: Joy Ward
Research Interest: Plant responses to past environments through the analysis of pack rat (Neotoma) middens 
Hometown: Navarre, Florida

Sally Chang
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Paulyn Cartwright
Research Interests: Invertebrate phylogenetics and evolution, evolutionary developmental biology
Hometown: Silver Spring, Maryland

Chovanec, Kevin
Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Adviser: Rich Glor
Research interests: Squamate systematics and biogeography; vertebrate paleontology
Hometown: Houston, TX

Marlon E. Cobos
Doctoral aspirant EEB

Advisor: Town Peterson
Research interests: Ecology, Biogeography, Evolution, Biodiversity informatics
Hometown: Loja, Ecuador

Kaila Colyott
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Jennifer Gleason
Research Interests: Insect Behavior, Sexual Selection, Behavioral Genetics, Science Communication Outcomes, Undergraduate Biology Education
Hometown: Rockford, IL

Pietro de Mello
Doctoral candidate EEB

Adviser: Richard Glor
Research interests: Biogeography, ecological speciation, ecology, phylogeography, phylogenetics
Hometown: São Paulo, Brazil

Thilina De Silva
Doctoral candidate

Advisor: Town Peterson
Research Interests: Museum and genomics approaches to understand the basis of avian diversity, evolution and behavior. Mechanisms for slowing /preventing the loss of biodiversity (in Sri Lankan ecosystems). Study of bird guilds as ecological indicators.
Hometown: Kandy, Sri  Lanka

Lucas DeCicco
Doctoral aspirant EEB

Advisor: Robert Moyle
Research interests: Avian phylogeography & taxonomy; museum collections growth, development, and use; avifauna of eastern Indonesia
Hometown: Fairbanks, Alaska

Camille Delavaux
Doctoral candidate, EEB, Self Fellow

Advisor: Jim Bever
Research interests: Tropical Ecology; Mycorrhizal, Plant, and Soil Ecology
Hometown: Pittstown, NJ

Devon DeRaad
Doctoral Aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rob Moyle
Research Interests: Systematics, hybrid zones, divergence, genomics
Hometown: Scottsdale, Arizona
 

Taryn Dunivant
Master's student
7024 Haworth

Advisor: Brian Atkinson
Research Interests: Paleobotany; Plant Evolution, Systematics, and Physiology
Hometown: Los Angeles, California

Sumudu Fernando
Doctoral candidate

Advisor: Town Peterson
Research Interests: Biogeography, Phylogenetics and Speciation
Hometown: Kurunegala, Sri Lanka

James Fischer
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth Hall

Adviser: Joy Ward
Research interest: The impacts of rising carbon dioxide from anthropogenic sources on leaf epidermal structures; from a whole leaf level to a molecular scale.
Hometown: Lee’s Summit, MO

Ben Freeman
Doctoral aspirant

Advisor: Town Peterson
Research interest: Biodiversity informatics, distribution  ecology, ecological niche modeling
Hometown: Greenville, Liberia

Grace Garrison
Master's student EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Dan Reuman
Research interests: Mathematical biology
Hometown: Shawnee, KS

Soudeh Ghasemian
Doctoral aspirant
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Sharon Billings
Research Interest: The Effects of Anthropogenic Change and Climate Change on Terrestrial Ecosystems; in particular Plant Communities, Monitoring and Modeling, Drought Management, Water Resources Management.
Hometown: Mashhad, Iran

Girard, Matt
Doctoral candidate
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Leo Smith
Research Interests: Morphological and molecular evolution of carangiform fishes
Hometown: Miami, FL

Jennifer Girón Duque
Doctoral candidate
6002 Haworth Hall

Advisor: Andrew Short
Research Interests: Morphology, phylogeny, systematics, biodiversity and biogeography of Coleoptera
Hometown: Cali, Colombia
Website: https://sites.google.com/view/jcgiron/home

Paige Hansen
Master's student
Higuchi, KBS

Advisor: Ben Sikes
Research interests: Microbial ecology, soils, microbial response to climate change
Hometown: Brookings, SD

Doctoral Aspirant
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Sharon Billings
Research interest: Ecosystems ecology and soil biogeochemistry
Hometown: Athens, Ohio

Henderson, Aleah
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth

Adviser: Joy Ward
Research interests: Effects of global change factors e.g. rising carbon dioxide on plant development
Hometown: Homer, Louisiana

Mark Herr
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research interests: Biogeography and Evolutionary Ecology of Southeast Asian Herpetofauna.
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Kaylee Herzog
Doctoral aspirant
Haworth Hall 5024

Advisor: Kirsten Jensen
Research Interests: Taxonomy and systematics of elasmobranch tapeworms; host-parasite cophylogeny
Hometown: Delmar, NY

Jesse Holmes
Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rob Moyle
Research interests: Ornithology, Biogeography, Evolution, Systematics
Hometown: Rolla, MO

Hopkins, Jacob
Doctoral aspirant
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Benjamin A. Sikes
Research interest: Population Biology, Restoration Ecology, Mycology, Fire Regimes, Plant-Soil Feedbacks
Hometown: Kokomo, Indiana

Carl Hutter
Doctoral candidate
Dyche Hall

Advisors: Rafe Brown and Rich Glor
Research Interests: Biogeography, speciation, community assembly, systematics, macroevolution
Hometown: Shawano, Wisconsin

Kate Ingenloff
Doctoral candidate
KU Biodiversity Institute

Adviser: Town Peterson
Research Interests: Distributional ecology, Biodiversity conservation, Development of open-access biodiversity informatics resources
Hometown: San Antonio, TX

Laura Jimenez
Doctoral aspirant

Adviser: Jorge Soberon
Research Interests: Ecological niche modeling, species distribution modeling, biodiversity, and statistical ecology.
Hometown: Guanajuato, Mexico

Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Chris Beard
Research interests: Bat paleontology and evolution; Mammal evolution and paleobiogeography
Hometown: Wichita, KS

Amanda Katzer
Master's student EEB
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Lena Hileman
Research interests: Nectar production; pollination syndromes
Hometown: Olathe, Kansas
 

Michelle Kelly
Master's student EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Amy Burgin
Research interests: Nutrient dynamics in streams and riparian zones
Hometown: Cary, Illinois
 

Ben Kerbs
Master's student
8004 Haworth

Advisors: Mark Mort and Dan Crawford
Research Interests: Plant systematics, biogeography, and population genetics
Hometown: Emporia, KS

 Ali Khalighifar
Doctoral aspirant EEB

Adviser: Town Peterson
Research interests: Ecological Niche Modeling
Hometown: Isfahan, Iran

Lukas Klicka
Doctoral candidate
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rob Moyle
Research Interesets: Phylogeography and population genetics
Hometown: Cambridge, MN

Anna Klompen
Doctoral aspirant
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Paulyn Cartwright
Research Interest: Cnidarian venom and stinging cell evolution
Hometown: Worthington, Ohio
 

Az Klymiuk
Doctoral candidate, EEB
785-864-4338
Takeru Higuchi Hall, KBS

Advisor: Benjamin A Sikes
Research Interests: mycology, microbial ecology, taphonomy, paleobotany, paleomycology, comparative plant anatomy
Hometown: Alberta, Canada

Jackob Lutchen
Master's student EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Jim Thorp
Research interests: Macroinvertebrates, aquatic ecology, food webs
Hometown: Rogers, MN

Fernando Machado Stredel

Advisor: Town Peterson
Research interests: Ornithology, Systematics, Biogeography, Evolution
Hometown: Caracas, Venezuela

Rene Martin
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Leo Smith
Research interests: Ichthyology, systematics, evolutionary biology, and phylogenetics/phylogenomics
Hometown: Vadnais Heights, MN

Gregory Mathews
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor name: Jim Thorp
Research Interest: Aquatic community diversity and ecology
Hometown: Frostburg, MD

Spencer Mattingly
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Dyche Hall, 318C

Adviser: Chris Beard
Research interests: The Great Old World Biotic Interchange: mammalian faunal exchange between Africa and Asia at the Oligocene – Miocene boundary; fossil primate systematics; Afrothere systematics
Hometown: Richmond, Kentucky

Daphne Mayes
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth

Advisor: Deborah Smith
Research Interests: Insect pollinators; Conservation
Hometown: Hartford, KS

Theo Michaels
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Higuchi Hall

Adviser name: Ben Sikes
Research interests: Restoration ecology, grassland ecology and conservation, plant-soil interactions, microbial ecology
Home town: Santa Rosa, CA

Andrew Mongue
Doctoral candidate
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Jamie Walters
Research Interests: Reproductive biology, population genomics, sperm competition, Lepidoptera
Hometown: Jonesboro, GA

Claudia Nunez
Doctoral Aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor name: Jorge Soberon
Research Interests: Ecology and conservation of Lepidoptera. Ecological Niche Modeling. Biogeography, Biodiversity informatics.
Hometown: Havana, Cuba

Master's Student
3002 Haworth

Adviser: Fola Agusto
Research Interests: Mathematical Biology - using mathematical modeling approach to gain insight into the epidemiology of some emerging and re-emerging diseases
Hometown: Ibadan, Nigeria

Karen Olson
Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research Interests: Phylogeography, population genetics and conservation of mammals
Hometown: Jupiter, Florida

Emily Ostrow
Doctoral Aspirant

Advisor: Rob Moyle
Research Interests: Avian phylogenomics, avian parasites, biogeography
Hometown: Ambler, PA

Laura Podzikowski
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: Amy Burgin
Research interests: Biogeochemistry, ecosystem ecology, aquatic ecology, aquatic-terrestrial interactions, and climate change
Hometown: Ferndale / Detroit, MI

Robert Ramos
Doctoral aspirant EEB
Higuchi Hall

Advisor: James Bever
Research interests: Evolution and persistence of symbiotic relationships; Mycorrhizal fungi; Plant and soil ecology
Hometown: Chicago, IL

Daniel Romero-Alvarez
Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor:  A. Townsend Peterson
Research interests: Parasitic diseases- Mapping the risk of infectious diseases- Ecological niche modeling applied to Public Health- Spatial epidemiology of vectors of infectious diseases
Hometown: Ecuador

Doctoral candidate
6016 Haworth Hall

Advisor: Jennifer Gleason
Research Interests: Courtship behavior, communication, signaling, sensory ecology, sexual selection
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

Sengupta Aniket
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Haworth Hall

Advisor: Lena Hileman
Research Interests: CYCLOIDEA-dependent regulatory network in flower and fruit evolution. History of botany
Hometown: Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Chenchen Shen
Master's student EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Chris Beard
Research interests: Evolution of fishes
Hometown: Beijing China

Ligia Souza
Doctoral aspirant
Higuchi Hall

Advisor name: Sharon Billings
Research Interests: Soils; biogeochemistry; erosion
Hometown: Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Walter Paulin Tapondjou
Master's student
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research interests: Population genetics and phylogeography of chameleons in the Cameroon Volcanic Line
Hometown: Douala, Cameroon

Julie Taylor
Master's student
Dyche Hall

Advisor name: Bruce Lieberman
Research Interests: Invertebrate paleontology, macroevolution, phylogenetics, biogeography
Hometown: Chesapeake, Virginia

Javier Torres
Doctoral Aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Richard Glor
Research interests: Evolution of Postmating Reproductive Isolation, Herpetology
Hometown: Havana, Cuba

Scott Travers
Doctoral candidate, EEB
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research Interest: Herpetological evolutionary biology, Phylogenetics, Biogeography, Lineage diversification,
Community assemblage.
Hometown:

Matthew Travert
Doctoral Aspirant
7022 Haworth

Advisor: Paulyn Cartwright
Research Interests: Evolutionary and developmental biology of medusozoans
Hometown: Paris, France

Rebekah Wagner
Master's student
5012 Haworth Hall

Advisor: Fola Agusto
Research Interests: theoretical ecology, plant community ecology, plant-soil feedbacks, prairie conservation
Hometown: Washington, IL
 

Jeffrey Weinell
Doctoral aspirant
Dyche Hall

Advisor: Rafe Brown
Research interests: systematics, phylogenetics, herpetology, biogeography
Hometown: Gonzales, LA


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