Ph.D. student at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station at Michigan State University.
So, what do you do?
I am an evolutionary ecologist, someone who studies how populations interact with each other and their environments, and how they change over time. I mostly work with amphibians and reptiles (herpetology).
How did you find your way to this career path?
I found my way to my career through college. I grew up fascinated with wildlife and animals, but never knew that I could study them as a job. In college, I took a biology class and my professors helped me realize the opportunity for careers in science.
Then, I worked in labs at my college during the semester and did internships at other institutions during the summer to get experience working in the field of science.
Having good mentors really makes the difference!
What is a typical day like for you?
Every day is a different day! I get to do fieldwork, lab work, computer work, writing, and talking to students and the public. This changes all the time.
For example, my last field season I spent a month in Ecuador doing fieldwork. Every day was spent in the field collecting data. Then, I spent the next few months doing lab work for the samples.
Now, I am working on the computer to analyze data, write up my projects into papers, and talk to students and the public about my science. My day-to-day tasks change all the time and just depend on what stage of a project I’m on.
Connect with Kyle
It’s research like mine that helps us understand how amphibians handle a changing environment.