Overview: I am a scientist and a writer who is fascinated with the ways in which tiny organisms (namely bugs and parasites) manage to connect every living thing on this planet. My specialty is Chagas disease (Trypanosoma cruzi) and triatomine bugs, but I love all parasites and vectors. I am fortunate enough to be able study these amazing systems in my job an Assistant Professor of Medical Entomology in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware.
Education: I have a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University (2015), where I studied disease ecology. Afterward, I did post-docs in disease modeling (Princeton and Notre Dame) and epidemiology (University of Pennsylvania), followed by teaching undergraduates at Portland State University and Lewis and Clark College.
Research: I am always trying to find out what’s really going on in a given system or scenario. In fancy science terms, people might say that I am interested in mechanistic questions. But basically, it goes like this: Disease dynamics are just that- always dynamic, always complex, and always more than meets the eye!
Approach: I answer questions using a cross-disciplinary, holistic approach. For any given disease scenario, I investigate interactions between organisms and their environment, the local human culture, across spatio-temporal scales, in parasite communities, the local foodweb… the list goes on and on! For a description of past and present projects, click here.