Naturalists’ Corner: Nowhere Left To Go by Sonya Vickers
Inspiring a Love of Natural History Collections Through Course Based Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs)
Presenter: Dr. Kathryn Weglarz
Assistant Professor of Biology, Westfield State University
Natural history collections rely on a public that places value in their general mission of serving as institutions of education and active scientific research. Involving undergraduate students directly in research utilizing these collections helps foster a love of these invaluable resources. By embedding this research in course-based research experiences (CUREs), we can also increase the equity of these research
experiences by ensuring all students have an equal opportunity to participate. January’s presentation will focus on the on-going efforts at Westfield State University to incorporate CUREs using natural history collections into the biology curriculum.
About the Speaker: Dr. Kathryn Weglarz is Assistant Professor of Biology at Westfield State University. She completed her Ph.D. at Utah State University working on adelgids and their symbionts and a postdoctoral position in collaboration with the USDA Forest Service working on aquatic macroinvertebrate communities. Her research focuses on identifying evolutionary consequences and signatures of
organismal interactions across biological scales using molecular, computational, and field-based approaches. Dr. Weglarz has received support from the National Science Foundation and Westfield’s Presidential Innovation Fund. She teaches courses in Environmental Biology and Parasitology and mentors several research students.