Graduate Students

About

Our biology graduate students work closely with faculty members on research. For information about our graduate students’ research, see below.

For faculty research interests and contact information, see our faculty directory.

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Photo of Ethan Bean

Ethan Bean

Graduate Student
Brown's Lab
Photo of Ethan Bean
SCI 245

I am conducting a population genetics study on bluebunch wheatgrass, a native, cool-season bunchgrass with deep root structures that will be a staple in the EWU Prairie Restoration Project. I am looking into whether native populations that have persisted until now are reproductively isolated from each other, which could lead to inbreeding depression and genetic drift depending on the size, and degree of isolation of populations. Additionally, I am investigating whether local populations are closely related to commercial seed sources that are supposed to be adapted to this region.

Photo of Giovanna Bishop

Giovanna Bishop

Graduate Student
Allen's Lab
Photo of Giovanna Bishop

I am studying the impacts of Rock Climbing to Lichen and Bryophyte cliff communities in the Spokane area. Very little is known about the lichens and bryophytes here in Eastern Washington; there is no key or field guide, as well as the groups themselves are very understudied. Cliff ecologists have found rare and endangered lichens and bryophytes when conducting these studies and I think it is imperative that more climbing areas are assessed, especially those in the Pacific NW which is known for the density and diversity of lichens and bryophytes. In this project I will be attempting to catalog the lichens and bryophytes of these cliff communities as well as assessing the overall impacts that rock climbing has on the biodiversity and cover. Rock climbing is a very fast growing sport and many areas around Spokane are developing new routes without any regulations or conservation management plans. My goal by the end of my masters is to better understand the impacts of rock climbing to the lichens and bryophytes in Eastern Washington, create a field guide to the common lichens and bryophytes of climbing areas, and to establish a conservation management plan for areas that currently have routes and areas that wish to develop new ones.

Photo of Nicholas Broderius

Nicholas Broderius

Graduate Student
McNeely's Lab
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Photo of Hannah Coles

Hannah Coles

Graduate Student
Spruell and McNeely's Lab
Photo of Hannah Coles
SCI 190 & SCI 275
Photo of Dana Colley

Dana Colley

Graduate Student
Magori's Lab
Photo of Dana Colley

I am studying the interactions between ectoparasite loads, skin microbiome composition, and white-nose syndrome severity in Washington State bats. White-nose syndrome (WNS) was first detected in the winter of 2006/2007 in New York and has spread rapidly across the Eastern United States since its initial introduction. WNS was first detected in Western Washington in 2016 and continues to gain momentum in local bat colonies. The relationship between ectoparasite loads, skin microbiome composition, and WNS severity is still unknown, and few studies have been conducted of this kind outside of the Eastern United States. The goal of my research is to potentially isolate naturally-occurring antifungal bacteria from the bats, and to provide novel information on factors impacting WNS severity for future management of this disease.

Photo of Alicia Cozza

Alicia Cozza

Graduate Student
Spruell's Lab
Photo of Alicia Cozza
Photo of Krista Dodd

Krista Dodd

Graduate Student
Walke's Lab
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Photo of Dechen Edwards

Dechen Edwards

Graduate Student
J. Matos & Ochoa-Reparaz' Lab
Photo of Dechen Edwards
SCI 240 & SCI 295

I study the ecophysiology of freshwater “fingernail” clams (Sphaeriidae) living in the chain lakes of the Coeur d’Alene River in Idaho, downstream of the Bunker Hill Superfund Site. My research focuses on the effects of trace metal pollution on the growth, reproduction, and microbiome of fingernail clams.

Shelby Fettig

Graduate Student
Walke's Lab
SCI 289
Photo of Nicole Hamada

Nicole Hamada

Grraduate Student
Case's Lab
Photo of Nicole Hamada

I am conducting research on cirrhosis of the liver from an etiology of alcohol induced liver disease. My research investigates the role of hepatocytes when a liver is cirrhotic and pathway/mechanisms of cytokine signaling that result in fibrogenesis. My graduate research will be based on dictating liver histology and reviewing current literature in hopes of analyzing cytokine signaling in order to manipulate adipose stem cells for liver regeneration.

Photo of Christopher Harding

Christopher Harding

Graduate Student
Ashley's Lab
Photo of Christopher Harding
Photo of Emma Hoskins

Emma Hoskins

Graduate Student
Brown's Lab
Photo of Emma Hoskins

I am interested in how success in ecological restoration is defined. More specifically, I am interested in whether ecosystems restored to have all the characteristics of a target ecosystem also maintain the same ecological processes as the target ecosystem. To explore this question in terms of pollination, my research is comparing the structure of plant-pollinator interaction networks between remnant and reconstructed Palouse Prairie sites. Plant-pollinator networks are all the interactions that occur between pollinating insects and flowering plants. Comparing the structure of these networks among reconstructed and remnant prairies sites will provide insight into which flowering plants are important to pollinating insects for the resources they provide, which pollinating insects are important for the reproductive success of flower plants, how these relationships may change as a site progresses through restoration recovery, and if interaction networks are currently being re-established in Palouse Prairie restoration.

Tiffany Jordan

Graduate Student
Ochoa Reparaz' Lab
Photo of Hannah Kohl

Hannah Kohl

Graduate Student
Ochoa-Reparaz' Lab
Photo of Hannah Kohl
SCI 295

Tyrel Long

Graduate Student
Dr. Magori's Lab
Photo of Taylor Mauzy

Taylor Mauzy

Graduate Student
L. Matos' Lab
Photo of Taylor Mauzy
Photo of Macee Mitchell

Macee Mitchell

Graduate Student
Walke's Lab
Photo of Macee Mitchell
Photo of Sarah Richardson

Sarah Richardson

Graduate Student
Black's & Spruell's Labs
Photo of Sarah Richardson
SCI 252 & SCI 190

My project is investigating the effects of two invasive species of fish on the aquatic invertebrate communities and food webs of the historically fishless wetlands of Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge (TNWR). In situations where multiple species invade the same system, it can be difficult for managers to properly mitigate the damage caused by each species due to their compounding effects. In this case, the brook stickleback, Culaea inconstans, and pumpkinseed, Lepomis gibbosus, are found throughout TNWR, often co-invading many of the same waterbodies. My project will compare 10 lakes, including fishless lakes, lakes with stickleback only, pumpkinseed only, and lakes that are co-invaded. In order to identify and disentangle the individual effects of both species, I intend to use two metrics for comparison: (1) food web structure through the use of stable isotope analysis and (2) invertebrate community composition through the use of abundance and diversity data. My hope is to illustrate how invasive fish impact a system differently when multiple species invade simultaneously versus when they invade individually.

Photo of Kristy Snyder

Kristy Snyder

Graduate Student
Brown's Lab
Photo of Kristy Snyder

Bryn Tennyson

Graduate Student
Castillo's Lab
Photo of Benjamin Thompson

Benjamin Thompson

Graduate Student
Magori's Lab
Photo of Benjamin Thompson

I am researching tick populations in the greater Spokane area. My collection data is used twofold. One purpose is to create a questing tick density map of Spokane County, WA to visually show the areas that have the highest likelihood of encountering ticks. Also, all ticks collected are tested for disease. The primary disease of concern is Rocky Mountain spotted fever caused by the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii. The purpose for this is the public health importance of monitoring local vector-borne zoonotic diseases.

Photo of Craig Wells

Craig Wells

Graduate Student
Spruell's Lab
Photo of Craig Wells

My research aims to use molecular techniques build a genetic baseline that can be used to identify the most likely stream of natal origin for Westslope Cutthroat Trout (Oncorhynchus clarki lewisi) within the Clark Fork-Pend Oreille Basin in the hopes of aiding conservation goals for the species. Many dams in the Clark Fork-Pend Oreille Basin lack fish passage systems, a problem which blocks migratory salmonids—including Westslope Cutthroat Trout—from completing spawning migrations to their natal streams and making reproductive/genetic contributions. A genetic baseline, based on single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), will allow biologists and managers to capture a fish below a barrier, conduct a genetic analysis, and then use those results to make informed decisions about whether that fish should receive passage over a barrier. Improving the passage of migratory individuals over dams will allow them to reproduce and make genetic contributions to populations that may be experiencing decline.