Genetics Technician – Resource Sciences
Missouri Department of Conservation
226 Tucker Hall
University of Missouri
Leeward Community College – Pearl City, Hawaiʻi – AA in Liberal Arts, 2013
University of Missouri – Columbia, Missouri – BS in Biological Sciences, 2017
I am interested in research involving conservation and ecology; specifically, population and landscape genetics, molecular ecology, ethology, modeling, and ethnoconservation. I strongly believe in scientific outreach as a powerful investment in both the conservation of species and habitats of concern, as well as the advancement of science as a whole. As I grow as a scientist, I hope to be able to work with a variety of species and habitats.
I graduated from Leeward Community College in Pearl City, Hawaiʻi in 2013 with an A. A. in liberal arts. After taking a year off, I returned to academia to obtain my B. S. in biology at University of Missouri – Columbia (MU); graduating in 2017. As an undergraduate researcher at MU, I worked with Dr. Lori Eggert and anthropology Ph. D. candidate Rachel Munds to investigate the evolutionary history of Lorisidae primates (Arctocebus, Loris, Nycticebus, and Perodicticus). We also looked at their phylogeny in relation to genes that influence coat color and patterning to better describe their taxonomy. Since all Lorisidae primates are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species <https://www.cites.org/eng/disc/what.php>, we worked with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the participants of their Lorisidae Species Survival Plan program <https://www.aza.org/ssp-population-sustainability> to accomplish our goals.
Currently, I am working as Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Genetics Lab Technician at MU. I use genetic and molecular techniques to help inform management decisions for species of concern. Some of these projects include walleye (Sander vitreus), American black bear (Ursus americanus), lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens), North American elk (Cervus Canadensis) and fish communities. MDC projects and investigations can be novel or ongoing, collaborative or in-house, expand or focus, maintain or shift depending on what is need. MDC also works with the public through forums, traditional and social media, habitat/species management, and hunting/fishing related sample collection. This position allows me to continue refining my laboratory and organizational skills, investigate a wide breadth of questions and species, and see how my part ultimately contributes to conservation management and public outreach.
Check out the News page for the most up to date news about our lab members!