News

Danielle Fortin Wins Vera M. Wallach Honors College Scholarship Fund Award
Danielle Fortin Wins Vera M. Wallach Honors College Scholarship Fund Award

Motivated by her passion to further understand and improve the care of livestock and domestic animals, Danielle Fortin has accomplished much as an active participant in undergraduate research and relevant career experience in her short time as an undergrad. She has recently been awarded the Vera M. Wallach Honors College Scholarship Fund Award for her dedication to her education and research at MSU.

Richard Hill Retires After 45 Years at MSU
Richard Hill Retires After 45 Years at MSU

Richard “Dick” Hill joined the Department in 1972 as an assistant professor. After 45 years at MSU, Dick retired in May 2017. Dick’s greatest legacy will be the students he inspired and mentored in the areas of research, education, and how to become better members of society.

Richard Lenski Elected Associate Member of the European Molecular Biology Organization
Richard Lenski Elected Associate Member of the European Molecular Biology Organization

Richard Lenski has been elected an associate member of the European Molecular Biology Organization. Richard was one of 65 life scientists elected to EMBO’s membership in 2017. This cohort joins a group of more than 1,700 of the best researchers in Europe and around the world.

Outstanding Senior Kecil John Strives to Inform the Public about Science
Outstanding Senior Kecil John Strives to Inform the Public about Science

Kecil John, was one of three students selected for the 2017 Outstanding Academic Achievement & Promise in Zoology Award. Kecil also won the Dr. Marvin Hensley Endowed Scholarship Fund in Zoology and was selected as an Outstanding Senior by the University. During her time at MSU, Kecil was a Professorial Assistant in the MSU Hyena Lab, a campus Resident Assistant, an intern at a public relations firm, and helped develop media for our communication channels.

Richard Lenski Gives Commencement Speach at Alma Mater's Doctoral Hooding Ceremony
Richard Lenski Gives Commencement Speach at Alma Mater's Doctoral Hooding Ceremony

Richard Lenski was invited to spoke at the Doctoral Hooding Ceremony at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he received his doctorate in 1982.  He spoke of core themes in his research and how these same themes play a role in life and our professional careers. 

Decomposing Leaves are a Surprising Source of Greenhouse Gases
Decomposing Leaves are a Surprising Source of Greenhouse Gases

Michigan State University scientists, including Integrative Biology's Nathaniel Ostrom, have pinpointed a new source of nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas that’s more potent than carbon dioxide. The culprit? Tiny bits of decomposing leaves in soil.

$2 Million NSF Grant Awarded to Predict Future Viability of Phytoplankton
$2 Million NSF Grant Awarded to Predict Future Viability of Phytoplankton

Elena Litchman is the lead investigator of a four-year, $2 million National Science Foundation (NSF) Dimensions of Biodiversity grant to study how genetic and functional diversity in phytoplankton helps them adapt to rising ocean temperatures.

MSU a key partner in Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research
MSU a key partner in Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research

Michigan State University is poised to play a big role in the newly formed Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research. A five-year, $20 million dollar grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration was awarded to support the Institute, strengthening current research efforts into the sustainable management of the Great Lakes region. The Institute is a partnership of nine universities and several nongovernmental organizations, nonprofits and private businesses. Jan Stevenson took the lead in developing MSU’s contribution to the proposal.

Frazer Meacham and Tom Getty Tackle the Big Questions in Life: Sexual Selection & Parental Investment
Frazer Meacham and Tom Getty Tackle the Big Questions in Life: Sexual Selection & Parental Investment

For many creatures, the big questions in life include who to mate with and how much to invest in the offspring. Sexual selection theory addresses the first question. Parental investment theory addresses the second. Historically, these questions have been analyzed as separate problems, or with drastic simplifications to make them analytically tractable. With support from the BEACON STC for the Study of Evolution in Action, Frazer Meacham and Tom Getty used an evolutionary replicator-dynamic modeling approach to find co-evolutionary solutions to this game.

Jakob Nalley: Science Educator and Algal Biologist
Jakob Nalley: Science Educator and Algal Biologist

After finishing his dual Ph.D. in Integrative Biology and Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior at Michigan State University, Jakob Nalley was off to Northwestern University to further pursue his passion for research and science education. Jakob’s new job focuses on enhancing community engagement and improving science education through Northwestern University’s Science in Society, a research center dedicated to science education and public engagement.

Sam Decker: An Award-Winning Student's Pursuit of a Research-Based Welfare Management Career
Sam Decker: An Award-Winning Student's Pursuit of a Research-Based Welfare Management Career

As a Zoology major, Sam Decker was very involved in experiential opportunities. Sam also excelled academically. At graduation, he was recognized for numerous academic achievements, including the 2017 Outstanding Academic Achievement and Promise in Zoology Award and Board of Trustees Award. He is pursuing a Master's program at the University of Guelph in the lab of Georgia Mason. One of Sam's career goals is to strengthen relationships between universities and animal care facilities to promote research-based welfare management. Specifically, implementing research-based welfare management in zoos.

Outstanding Student to Outstanding Professional: Alumna Rachel Emory's Role in the Care of Elephants in Captivity
Outstanding Student to Outstanding Professional: Alumna Rachel Emory's Role in the Care of Elephants in Captivity

In 2014, Rachel Emory won the Outstanding Undergraduate Academic and Promise in Zoology award. She was recognized at Michigan State for her performance as an undergraduate inside and outside the classroom. Two weeks after graduation, Rachel moved to Oklahoma to take on her dream position as Elephant Keeper at the Oklahoma City Zoo. Since then she has traveled to India to work with rescued elephants and been promoted to Lead Elephant Caretaker. She is a member of a team that has built an incredibly successful platform of commitment to the health and care of elephants in captivity.

Sarah Saunders Wins MSU's Postdoctoral Excellence in Research Award
Sarah Saunders Wins MSU's Postdoctoral Excellence in Research Award

Sarah Saunders, a postdoctoral research associate in the Zipkin Lab, has received a Postdoctoral Excellence in Research Award by the MSU Postdoctoral Association and the Office of the Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies. Each year two exceptional postdoctoral researchers are recognized for their contributions to Michigan State University and the research community. Winners are selected based on the significance, innovation, and impact of their scientific research.

Steve Hamilton Named Inaugural Society for Freshwater Science Fellow
Steve Hamilton Named Inaugural Society for Freshwater Science Fellow

Steve Hamilton has been named an inaugural fellow of the Society for Freshwater Science for his contributions to promoting public appreciation of freshwater science through education and outreach. 

Looking Beyond the Breeding Groups
Looking Beyond the Breeding Groups

Every winter, trees on high mountains in a small area northwest of Mexico City turn orange. Close inspection reveals branches filled with brilliantly colorful monarch butterflies, rather than fiery leaves, as the eastern North American population of monarchs winters there. Their numbers, however, are shrinking. New research makes a strong case that the reasons for this decline go far beyond what’s happening on the wintering grounds and addresses a current controversy about the primary causes of the species' decline.

Zoology Majors Win MSUFCU Internship Awards
Zoology Majors Win MSUFCU Internship Awards

Six Zoology majors have received the 2017 MSUFCU Internship Awards. These financial awards help support students' unpaid internships.

2017 Department Award Winners Announced
2017 Department Award Winners Announced

Congratulations to all the 2017 award winners: Randy Knapik, Tracy Montgomery, Savvas Constantinou, Abhijna Parigi, Lauren Koenig, Patric Vaelli, Samuel Decker, Kecil John, Clara Lepard, Paige Barnes, Armen Brus, Jasmine Czajka, Nickolaus Green, Steven Gurney, Jacob Kimmel, Heather Seaman, and Jacob Wright.

$1.5M NSF Grant to Explore Secrets of Electric Fish Genome
$1.5M NSF Grant to Explore Secrets of Electric Fish Genome

Electric fish have been a model biology system since the 18th century. Their potential, though, has been mostly isolated to neurological studies.Thanks to the recent availability of electric fish genome sequences, Michigan State University researchers hope to harness the power of CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing in electric fish to make a new type of model for biology.

Eila Roberts Joins Integrative Biology
Eila Roberts Joins Integrative Biology

We are excited to announce that Eila (pronounced "A"-la) Roberts, Ph.D. joined the Department as a Specialist-Advisor on May 15, 2017. Not only does Eila bring a strong academic advising background to the Spartan community, but she has also has excelled as a researcher and educator.

Kay Holekamp Becomes an Inaugural Award Winner
Kay Holekamp Becomes an Inaugural Award Winner

Kay Holekamp, University Distinguished Professor of Integrative Biology, has been selected as the inaugural recipient of the Graduate School Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award. This award was developed to formally recognize good mentoring practices at Michigan State University.