The following graduate students defended dissertations and earned doctorates in 2021:
Yunci Qi graduated from the Plant and Microbial Biosciences graduate program after defending on April 8, 2021. His thesis work was on 'genetic variations in the regulation and biosynthesis of polycyclic tetramate macrolactams'. He was advised by Josh Blodgett. Qi is currently applying for jobs.
Rachel Becknell graduated from the Evolution, Ecology, and Population Biology graduate program after defending on April 14, 2021. Her thesis work was on 'the role of soil microbes and plant relatedness in improving tallgrass prairie restoration and rare plant reinstroduction'. She was advised by Scott Mangan and Rachel Penczykowski. Becknell will start as a biology teacher at Bayless High School this August. Her goal will be to utilize inclusive curriculum so that students of all backgrounds are able to see themselves in the material. She will also continue her research on tallgrass prairie restoration at Tyson Research Center.
David Goad graduated from the Evolution, Ecology and Population Biology graduate program after defending on April 16, 2021. His thesis work was on 'the genetic basis of adaptation to environmental stress in two grass genomic model systems'. Goad was co-advised by Ken Olsen at WashU and Elizabeth “Toby” Kellogg at the Danforth Center. He is currently a postdoc at the Danforth Center in Dr. Charles An's Lab using genomics to improve the protein content of soybean seeds.
Leo Yan graduate from the Plant and Microbial Biosciences graduate program after defending on May 17, 2021. His thesis work was on 'chemical damage to mRNA and its impact on ribosome quality-control and stress-response pathways in eukaryotic cells'. He was advised by Hani Zaher. This fall, he will be working as a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Kostova’s lab in the Department of Embryology at the Carnegie Institution for Science.
Vince Fasanello graduated from the Evolution, Ecology, and Population Biology graduate program after defending on May 28th. His thesis work was on 'testing Janzen's physiological barrier hypothesis through experimental evolution and biogeographic studies on sister species pairs'. Fasanello was advised by Carlos Botero. He will be starting a Data Scientist position in the Crop Sciences Division at Bayer at the end of June.