Our Spring Semester 2017 classes are over…

We had a great semester of engagement with lots of Cornell undergraduates this Spring! In addition to the many less formal forms of instruction and mentoring to which everybody contributes, people from our group who were involved in official teaching and advising this semester included: Stepfanie Aguillion: Stepfanie led the…

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Songs, speciation, and sparrows

Postdoc Dave Toews provides some perspective in a “News and Views” article in the journal Molecular Ecology on new behavioral research in the white-throated sparrow conducgted by Sara Lipshutz (in Elizabeth Derryberry’s lab at Tulane), which compared bioacoustic variation across a contact zone between two white-throated sparrow subspecies. White-throated sparrows…

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New York Times, Forbes, etc: lots of press coverage of Leo’s paper on capuchino plumage genomics

Leo’s paper in Science Advances is getting lots of really great press coverage, notably this article and accompanying video by James Gorman in the New York Times, this post for Forbes by the anonymous but well regarded blogger GrrlScientist, and coverage on Spanish and Portuguese media though collaborators in Argentina…

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Nick wins a Cornell-wide teaching award!

Congratulations to Nick Mason for being recognized as a recipient of the Stephen and Margaret Russell Distinguished Teaching Award from the College of Arts and Sciences. This award celebrates those “who have demonstrated their devotion to teaching, where teaching is understood to include classroom presence, preparation and administration, student counseling…

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Galapagos Curriculum 2017

This semester a bunch of us are involved in the 5th offering of the Galapagos curriculum for Cornell undergraduates, including a really wonderful voyage through the archipelago over Spring Break. Course leaders include Stepfanie Aguillon who is teaching the associated Freshman Writing Seminar, Natalie Hoffmeister who is teaching the Evolutionary…

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Natalie, Dave, and Scott review discoveries about the genetics of carotenoid coloration

Spurred by several exciting findings in warblers and canaries, current lab members Dave Toews and Natalie Hoffmeister, and lab alum Scott Taylor, reviewed what is known about the evolution and genetics of carotenoid processing in animals in a paper just published in Trends in Genetics. Animals cannot synthesize carotenoids and…

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Nick on assessment of academic support programs

Graduate student Nick Mason recently published a paper with lead author Cissy Ballen to examine the effects of a campus support program for underrepresented minorities, first-generation students, and women in biology: the Biology Scholars Program (BSP) at Cornell. Together, Cissy and Nick found evidence of a disparity in preparedness among…

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Lucky postdocs in Italy for the Gordon Speciation Conference

Postdocs Jen Walsh and David Toews and Research Associate Leo Campagna are all currently presenting posters and talks at the Gordon Speciation Conference in Tuscany. They were also invited to a pre-conference seminar highlighting cool young investigators. This small conference, with approximately 120 attendees, is focused on the frontiers of…

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