Five Michigan State University W.K. Kellogg Biological Station graduate students have been recognized through the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships Program, or GRFP.
Stephanie Clark, Corinn Rutkoski, Moriah Young and Allison Zahorec each were named as a fellow and received a 2020 award. Kyle Jaynes received an honorable mention. All five conduct research based at KBS.
In addition, Caleb Krueger, a doctoral student in the Janzen Lab at Iowa State University, also was awarded a fellowship. He will begin research at KBS in the summer of 2021, after Fred Janzen takes the helm as KBS director.
The GRFP is the oldest graduate fellowship of its kind. The program supports exemplary graduate students in NSF-supported disciplines—science, technology, engineering and mathematics—who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees.
About the honorees
“The National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship is the most highly competitive award for beginning graduate students,” says KBS Interim Director Jeff Conner. “The recipients and those receiving honorable mentions are among the most promising young scientists in the U.S.”
Stephanie Clark is a doctoral student in MSU’s Department of Integrative Biology. After earning her B.S. in biology at Aquinas College, she began working as a field and laboratory technician in the Haddad Lab. Her research interests lie in Lepidoptera demography and conservation of native flora in agricultural settings.
Kyle Jaynes is a doctoral student in the MSU departments of Integrative Biology and Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Behavior. Before joining the Fitzpatrick Lab, he earned a B.A. in biology and environmental science from Adrian College. His research interests lie at the intersection of ecology, evolution and conservation biology, with a focus on amphibians and reptiles.
Caleb Krueger is a doctoral student in the Janzen Lab at Iowa State University. He earned a B.S. in wildlife biology and chemistry at Grand Valley State University. His research interests concern evolutionary quantitative genetics–including the extent and role of plasticity–of key traits that underpin temperature-dependent sex determination in reptiles. He also works on the population ecology and conservation genetics of threatened spotted turtles, particularly in Michigan.
Corinn Rutkoski is a doctoral student in MSU’s Department of Integrative Biology. She earned a B.S. in environmental science from Loyola University Chicago in 2017. As a student in the Evans Lab, She explores how soil bacteria and fungi respond when native prairie plants are introduced into agricultural fields.
Moriah Young is an incoming doctoral student in the Zarnetske Lab in MSU’s Department of Integrative Biology. She earned a B.S. in environmental science at the University of Michigan. She’s interested in researching the effects of climate change on soil biota-plant-herbivore interactions.
Allison Zahorec is a doctoral student in MSU’s Department of Entomology. After earning her B.S. in zoology at Kent State University, she joined the Landis Lab. Her research interests include studying how insects interact with and impact other organisms in the community, and the implications of such multi-trophic interactions on the environment.