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Mildred Akagha

Mildred Akagha, Johansen Lab
Office: D-W117
Phone: 216.397.3077
Email: makagha22@jcu.edu

I graduated from the University of Lagos, Nigeria in 2014. As an undergraduate, my research focused on the Antioxidant effect of aqueous ethanolic extract of Anthocleista vogelii on wistar albino rats intoxicated with Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4). I further evaluated the proximate composition and lipid profile of Nitzschia sp. isolated from a tidal creek in Lagos state as a graduate student. I am currently exploring systematic taxonomy and phylogenetic analysis of cyanobacteria from understudied ecosystems for my masters research project in Dr. Johansen’s lab at John Carroll University.

 

Micah Ashford

Micah Ashford, Watling Lab
Office: D-W311
Phone: 216.397.1569
Email: mashford22@jcu.edu

My research interests vary from conservation practices to endangered species management and my professional career has followed these interests. My project goals at John Carroll University are to examine landscape thermal heterogeneity and refine methods for spatial, thermal data collection using modern technology.

 

Osmary Medina Baez

Osmary Medina Baez, Watling Lab
Office: W311
Phone: 216.397.1569
Email: omedinabaez21@jcu.edu

I received my B. S. in Biology from the University of Puerto Rico in 2017. As an undergraduate, I had the opportunity to conduct research related to movement and habitat distribution of the invasive Boa constrictors in Puerto Rico. As an REU student at Mountain Lake Biological Station in Virginia, I studied critical thermal limits in red-backed salamanders. I will be working on my thesis project as a member of Dr. James Watling’s research laboratory studying thermal physiology of salamanders found in Colombia.

 

olivia brooks

Olivia Brooks, Saporito Lab
Office: W112
Phone: 216.397.6207
Email: obrooks21@jcu.edu

I graduated from Ohio University with my B.S. in wildlife and conservation biology in 2018. My undergraduate research focused on the impacts of abandoned crabbing and fishing gear on the Diamondback Terrapin (Malaclemys terrapin). As a member of Dr. Saporito’s lab, I plan to study the maternal provisioning of alkaloids in dendrobatid frogs.

 

Teah Evers

Teah Evers, Anthony/Hickerson Lab
Office: D-W341
Phone: 216.397.6206
Email: tevers22@jcu.edu

I received by B.S. in Biology (Ecology and Environmental Biology) from Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania. As an undergraduate, I did research on territoriality and sex-specific spatial movement in the Eastern Red-backed Salamander (Plethodon cinereus). At John Carroll, I will be in the Anthony/Hickerson lab continuing my research with this polymorphic salamander. Specifically, I will be applying my knowledge of territoriality to compare range edge and range core populations.

 

Kelsey Garner

Kelsey Garner, Anthony/Hickerson Lab
Office: D-W112
Phone: 216.397.6207
Email: kgarner22@jcu.edu

I am interested in whether behaviors such as aggression, dispersal, and exploration are repeatable in a given individual; if so, are they often observed together, as a behavioral syndrome. Specifically, do behavioral differences exist between range-core and range-edge populations of Eastern Red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus), and if so, what evolutionary and ecological aspects contributed to such divergence.

 

Joy Jackson

Joy Jackson, Johansen Lab
Office: D-W117
Phone: 216.397.3077
Email: jjackson22@jcu.edu

I am currently enrolled in the M.S Biology program. I am interested in aquatic ecology specifically, freshwater systems. My thesis research is focused on analyzing benthic diatom communities in Lake George, NY to further understand the effects of cultural eutrophication.

 

Abigail Perrino

Abigail Perrino, Drenovsky Lab
Office: W239
Phone: 216.397.1720
Email: aperrino21@jcu.edu

I received my B. A. in Biology in 2010 from Judson University. Since then I have done botanical studies and wetland surveys for both research and regulatory purposes for several organizations across the Midwest. I am excited to be a part of the Drenovsky lab, studying plant ecology.

Adam Ruka

Adam Ruka, Johansen Lab
Office: W117
Phone: 216.397.3077
Email: aruka21@jcu.edu

I graduated last Spring from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point with a B.S. in Biology. During my undergraduate, I studied the effect of fire upon bryophyte communities and nutrient gradients in algae communities. I am working in Dr. Johansen’s lab to assess the phycological health of Lake George in the New York Adirondacks.

 

Jessica Ryan

Jessica Ryan, Anthony-Hickerson Lab
Office: W112
Phone: 216.397.6207
Email: jryan21@jcu.edu

I received my B.S. in Biology (Emphasis in Ecology and Biodiversity) from Humboldt State University in 2018. As an undergraduate, I spent two summers with the Clark lab at San Diego State University studying the predator-prey interactions of Sidewinder rattlesnakes (Crotalus cerastesem>) and Desert kangaroo rats (Dipodomys deserti). At John Carroll, I will be working in the Anthony/Hickerson lab studying Eastern red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus). I am very interested in predator-prey interactions from my previous research experience and behavioral ecology in general and hope to study some aspect of P. cinereus’ behavior in relation to its polymorphic color patterns and intraspecific interactions.

 

Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, Watling Lab
Office: D-W342
Phone: 216.397.4496
Email: rsnyder22@jcu.edu

I am broadly interested in studying how landscape context influences behavior of tropical amphibians. Currently, I am researching the effects of habitat edges on tadpole rearing site choice and tadpole fitness of Oophaga pumilio.

 

Amanda Szinte

Amanda Szinte, Johansen Lab
Office: D-W342
Phone: 216.397.4496 or 216.397.3077
Email: aszinte22@jcu.edu

I’m a first year M.S. Biology student interested in studying algal ecology and systematics. I graduated from Ohio University in May 2019 with research projects including eDNA within stream biofilms and freshwater red algae. My thesis research will be focused on using morphological and molecular data to identify cyanobacteria in gypsum soil biocrusts from White Sands, New Mexico.

 

courtney thomas

Courney Thomas, Anthony/Hickerson Lab
Office: W341
Phone: 216.397.6206
Email: cthomas21@jcu.edu

I earned my BS/BA degrees in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from The Evergreen State College. As an undergraduate, I concentrated on the ecology and natural history of amphibians and reptiles, with a focus on phenotypic plasticity within the salamander family Dicamptodontidae. I’ve had the opportunity to study diverse herpetofauna in a variety of ecosystems as a research assistant since I graduated, and I am excited to return to academia under the advisement of Dr. Cari Hickerson and Dr. Carl Anthony. I will be joining their ongoing investigation of a polymorphic population of Plethodon cinereus in fall 2018.

Andrew Veselka

Andrew Veselka, Watling Lab
Office: W342
Phone: 216.397.1569
Email: aveselka21@jcu.edu

I graduated with a B.S. in Biology from Dickinson College in 2015. Since then I have tried to work in as many areas of wildlife ecology as possible. These include tracking king cobras (Ophiophagus hannah) for a local NGO in Northeast Thailand to better understand their life history, assisting The Nature Conservancy’s Maryland/DC office in land management, and surveying herpetofauna around the Santa Monica National Recreation Area to understand how they respond to human land use changes. Working in the Watling lab, I plan to research the thermal effects that human development has on herpetofaunal communities.