Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Grad Students
After receiving an M.S. in Biodiversity, Conservation, and Policy at UAlbany in 2007, Andy Allstadt decided to continue his studies in the EEB program. Andy has published several papers modeling spatial processes that affect the introduction and spread of invasive species with Dr. Caraco and Dr. Korniss (RPI). Currently he is conducting a field experiment with Dr. Newman (U. of Guelph) to test these models. He fills most of his free time running and traveling to races.
Adam graduated from Cornell University in 2006 with a BS of Entomology. While at Cornell he worked in the lab of Ann Hajek on entomophthoralean fungi, especially Entomophaga maimaiga and gypsy moths. He also participated in an extensive field survey of Carabid beetles associated with soybean aphid, Aphis glycines. He is now working at the New York State Museum in Dr. Jason Cryan's insect phylogenetics lab on a large-scale phylogenetic investigation of spittlebugs (the Hemipteran superfamily Cercopoidea) of the world.
Chris Collins conducts his research through an assistantship at the New York State Museum. He has an B.S. in Biology from Houghton College and an M.S in Immunology and Infectious disease from Albany Medical College. His prior research focused on intracellular signaling pathways involved in the invasion of cells by the intracellular bacteria Francisella tularensis. His current research examines the effect of parasites and disease on activity and mortality in small mammals. He uses an Automated Radio Telemetry System (ARTS) to monitor a population of radio-collared mice. The ARTS will alert us to an animal's death through an SMS message to our cell phone so we can immediately examine the crime scene to determine the cause of death.
Shannon is pursuing a PhD in the EEB program, and plans to conduct her primary research surveying biodiversity across a riverine barrier in Cameroon. She attended University of Alaska Fairbanks for her BS in Wildlife Biology and SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry for her MS in Conservation Biology. Her prior research focused on the effects of habitat fragmentation on insectivorous bat activity in an old-growth forest ecosystem in Olympic National Forest, Washington State. She has also worked for the USGS and USDA Forest Service in western Montana as a field crew leader for the Northern Divide Grizzly Bear Project. Shannon likes to spend her free time backpacking, kayaking, and relaxing with her husband and furry children, her dog and cats.
Elizabeth is a PhD student in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the
University at Albany. She received her B.A. in Biology in 2004 from Ithaca
College where her primary research focused on behavioral adaptations of
Poecile atricapillus to avoid winter abiotic factors. She also conducted
field research in Equatorial Guinea with the Bioko Biodiversity Protection
Program studying encounter rates to determine the effect of the bushmeat
trade on seven species of monkeys. In another lab, Elizabeth examined
mutations in the terminal protein complex transport chain, specially Cox
2, which has implications in Alzheimer’s disease and aging. At the
University at Albany, she will be working in Dr. Helmut Hirsch's lab
focusing on the long term effects of environmental lead exposure in Drosophila melanogaster.
Rebecca earned her B.S. in Biology from SUNY Cortland in 2002 and then pursued an M.S. in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at John Carroll University in Cleveland, OH; where she studied the affect of habitat quality on parasite burden and reproductive capacity in the streamside salamander, Desmognathus ochrophaeus. Her current research is focused on earthworm ecology along headwater streams; specifically how their presence affects streamside salamander diets, soil nitrogen cycling and litter removal. In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys running, horseback riding, and hiking with her dog.
Joel Ralston earned his B.S. in Zoology from SUNY Oswego in 2006. As an undergrad, he worked on many research projects including monitoring of small mammals, conservation of an endangered turtle species, restoration of degraded wetlands, and invasive species control. His honors thesis dealt with the effects of mowing regimes on the conservation and nesting ecology of old field birds. Current research interests focus on the factors determining levels of genetic structure among populations of boreal birds. Joel enjoys spending his time in the field, bird watching, hiking, or playing music.
Sean Robinson received his B.A. in Anthropology at Hartwick College in 2000 where he had the opportunity to travel to South Africa and Tanzania to study primate behavior. During his time abroad, he became interested in studying plant ecology. After coming home and spending two summers as a summit steward in the Adirondack high peaks, Sean went to SUNY-ESF where he received his M.S. in Ecology in 2003. His research at SUNY-ESF focused on vegetation change and the facilitation of vascular plant growth by bryophytes in the Adirondack alpine zone. As a second year PhD student at SUNY Albany, Sean is working in the Research and Collections department at the New York State Museum. In addition to continuing his work monitoring vegetation change and succession in the Adirondack alpine, Sean’s research interests include plant population biology, with a focus on dispersal and reproduction in bryophytes. His dissertation work is looking at the dispersal and population genetics of Sphagnum pylaesii on the Adirondack alpine summits.
Aaron is an international doctoral student in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology program at the University at Albany. He received his Bachelor of Science degree with honors in Microbiology from the University of Surrey in the United Kingdom. His dissertation investigated the effect of sleep, light and activity in young and older men. During Aaron’s time as an undergraduate, he participated in a Professional Training Year at Brigham and Women’s Hospital Division of Sleep Medicine (MA), as a circadian research coordinator through Harvard Medical School. Currently, his interests are circadian rhythms and behavioral ecology. Under the advisement of Dr. Helmut Hirsch, Aaron is studying the effect increased light exposure, bacterial infection and lead have on the immune response in Drosophila.
Heather graduated from Lehigh University in 2008 with her B.S in biology with a concentration in animal behavior and ecology. As an undergraduate she worked in the animal behavior lab studying the mating behaviors of convict cichlid fishes. Heather is currently focusing on using drosophila as a model system to study the interactions between phage and bacteria, and the effect of the immune response.