I am an organismal evolutionary biologist that emphasizes scholarly research, active learning, thoughtful mentoring, and diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM. <br><br>
People remember experiences and are moved to action based on feelings that are largely driven by <i>how </i>information is presented not<i> what</i> information is presented. I strive to share my blatant enthusiasm for scientific discovery and emphasizing personal interest in subject matter. In larger classrooms, I use active learning and small group exercises to preserve personal attention to students. When leading smaller discussion groups (arguably some of the most intimidating classes for students), I vary group sizes from week to week and use novel scenarios to spark discussion. I am excited to develop and teach both upper-division graduate seminars and core undergraduate biology courses at Utah State University.
Using field- and lab-work, my research program compares trait morphology and function among species to better understand how diversity develops, how diversity evolves, and why it matters. My research spans neurophysiology, genomics, morphology, and phylogenetic comparative methods, making it complementary with a number of labs in the USU biology department and a bridge for departmental collaboration. Employing these interdisciplinary methods, I pair the wealth of available information in museum collections with novel data acquired from the field to answer foundation questions regarding drivers and limits of morphological evolution and sensory adaptation.