Just 2 weeks post-Ph.D. defense, I set off in a UHaul truck to head to Denver, Colorado, where I’m joining the Ragland lab at University of Colorado Denver. I’ll be working on the overwintering biology and development of the apple maggot fly (Rhagoletis pomonella) and other insects for a couple of years. I’m excited to join the team!
Today was somewhat bitter sweet, as I gave my final seminar in the Physiology & Biochemistry graduate seminar series at Western. The annual talks that each graduate student gives is an awesome way for us all to catch up on what others in the department are up to, and to give each other research advice. While I look forward to finishing up my Ph.D. later this year, I will miss these seminars!
The beginning of January brought one of my favourite conferences: the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) annual meeting. This year it was in sunny San Francisco. I enjoying networking, discussing my freeze tolerance research with other integrative biologists, and the free 6:30 am Zumba classes!
As the end of December approaches, it’s pleasant to reflect on the semester past. We had a great visiting Ph.D. student, Tomas Stetina, who spent the semester collaborating with me on better understanding cricket freeze tolerance. (He’s safely back at his home university in Czechia now.) It was also a lovely term of teaching – as the teaching assistant for Animal Physiology for the third year running, it was great to tweak tutorials to improve student learning. And, of course, it wouldn’t be a December without the Sinclair lab holiday potluck, which is always good mandatory lab fun!
August brought me to Tartu, Estonia for the 7th International Symposium on the Environmental Physiology of Ectotherms and Plants (ISEPEP, 31 Jul – 4 Aug, 2017), where I presented some of my Ph.D. research findings. It was an amazing opportunity to discuss insect freeze tolerance with leaders in the field, and I’m looking forward to the next one in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2019!
Myself and a few other Sinclair lab members presented our work on insect cold tolerance at the Canadian Society of Zoologists (CSZ) Annual Meeting in Winnipeg, Manitoba this spring (15-19 May, 2017). It was a busy week for me: as Student Councillor, I helped organize events like the “Strategies for Success” workshop for students and postdoctoral fellows. I was also an invited panelist in a session on the future of zoology education in Canada (read more here). All in all: many great discussions on science, career, and education! (I also wrote a summary of the meeting here.)