What a momentous summer for our lab! We have said recently said goodbye to two of our lab members as they move onto the next stages of their ecological careers.
In early June, Alison gave her outstanding dissertation defense, entitled “A nutritional perspective on the Lepidopteran gut microbial community,” and was awarded her PhD in Biology from Stanford University—officially making her the Peay Lab’s first PhD graduate! Excited to continue her work in the symbiosis between insects and their microbial endosymbionts, Alison has joined Dr. Molly Hunter’s laboratory at the University of Arizona as a postdoctoral fellow. We look forward to her upcoming work, and wish her the best in her future endeavors!
In late June, Nora wrapped up her work on fungal succession in Tule Elk dung and completed her accomplished stint as our lab manager. After presenting a poster describing her work (“Abiotic causes and consequences of coprophilous fungal succession on Tule Elk dung”) at the Mycological Society of America 2016, she will move across the country and begin her graduate career as a PhD student working with Dr. Anne Pringle at the University of Wisconsin. There, she hopes to apply her experience with fungal ecology, evolution, and genomics to study the evolution of the ectomycorrhizal lifestyle in Amanita. We are not sure how we will keep the lab afloat without our beloved lab manager, but are excited to see what she’ll do at Wisconsin!