Current Graduate Students


Graduate Student

Major Professor

Project Rationale and Description

no photo


Dr. McDonough

Both nine – banded armadillo and Gopher tortoise are burrowing species that cohabit in the pine planted area of Moody Air Force Base. Habitat parameters (burrow morphometrics, canopy cover, visibility, orientation, sunlight penetration, temperature, angle of inclination, and distance from the edges) are set which can impact on the placement of burrows of these species. I am studying impact of these parameters on armadillos burrows placement in berm (manmade pile 50-100cm) and no berm. Likewise I am also assessing impact of these parameters on the placement of gopher tortoise burrows (hatchlings, subadults and adults). I am using generalized linear mixed model to describe the impacts of these parameters on the distribution of burrows of both species.

Joshua Brown

Brown, Joshua I.

Dr. Anderson

I am evaluating the utility of cross species transference of microsatellite DNA primers for population genetic studies of Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides). Our goal is to use these markers to make better inferences about reproductive modes and patterns of dispersion in this ecologically and culturally important bromeliad species.

Benjamin L Clubb

B. Luke

Dr. Uyeno

Project Rationale and Description: I study the diversity and feeding of hagfish. Hagfish make use of a unique muscular feeding apparatus rather than having opposable jaws that I am interested in characterizing.

Matthew Cowan


Matthew L.

Dr. Kang

Project Rationale and Description: I am currently conducting primary research in the field of bioinformatics on the thermodynamic properties of proteins that are catalogued and recorded on such websites such as UniProt, Protherm, and ExPASy. I am also undergoing additional areas of research with thermodynamic properties of viruses like the Zika virus and seeing if their stability can be predicted for future applications. I have the privilege as well to study the Zika virus in lab conditions and understand the way mosquitos carry the virus to human populations.

Emily Evans

Emily E.

Dr. Uyeno

Roderica Flucas

Roderica K.

Dr. Kang

I am studying the mind/body connection of the protein orexin. 


Samantha Gimbel

Samantha F.

Dr. Henkel

Monitoring populations of Lytechinus variegatus and Arbacia punctulata at Gray’s Reef Marine Sanctuary. Assessing the effects of ocean acidification on the respiration and movement capabilities of Lytechinus variegatus

Brand Griffin

Brandi M.

Dr. Anderson

Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides) can reproduce sexually by seed or asexually by vegetative breakage. I am using biomechanical techniques and histological analysis to clarify the functional morphology underlying vegetative breakage and tensile strength in this ecologically and culturally important bromeliad species.

Darrell Hill

W. Darrell

Dr. Blackmore

I am performing observations on Container-Breeding Mosquitoes in Valdosta, Ga by using Ovitraps. The purpose of this research is to enhance vector control in the city of Valdosta.

Andrew Holcomb


Andrew R.

Dr. Lockhart

Using antibody tagging tests I am studying the prevalence of a list of diseases seen in the opossum including, but not limited to: Borelia burdorferi, Bartonella henselae, Rickettsia rickettsi, etc. The prevalence of these diseases will be compared to already collected toxicology data to determine if exposure to heavy metals have an impact on susceptibility to disease or no effect at all
Sarah Hough

Sarah E.

Dr. Lockhart

Assessing metal accumulation in several common terrestrial mammals in South Georgia in order to relate land use practices and varying levels of anthropogenic impact with metal accumulation in the animals and to assess whether trophic level and feeding habits influence metal accumulation.
Phillip Lowe

Phillip D.

Dr. Carter

The sedge family (Cyperaceae) is the third largest monocot family in the World.  Cyperaceae contains a number of weeds of agronomic importance as well as other economically important taxa.  I am compiling a checklist of the Cyperaceae in Georgia based on holdings in the Valdosta State University and University of Georgia herbaria and constructing distribution maps for each species, showing occurrences in counties, physiographic provinces, and river drainage systems. I am also using morphometric data to explore selected taxonomic problems bearing on Georgia’s Cyperaceae, including two putatively new species, one each in Cyperus and Eleocharis, and the status of the southeastern granitic outcrop endemic, Cyperus granitophilus.
Katie Merritt

Merritt, Katie

Dr. Blackmore

West Nile Virus testing in Lowndes County by conducting antibody tests to determine a recent or past infection. Then correlating this data with the Lowndes County vector data collected by Dr. Blackmore's mosquito surveillance lab over the years.

James Ragan

Ragan, James

Dr. Waters

The environmental and ecological change of Cherry Lake, FL, USA: A paleolimnological analysis.


Dariana N.

Dr. Chambers

 Ellen Vedas


Ellen M.

Dr. Blackmore

I am studying prescribed fire and its effects on mosquito ecology and habitat.

Danielle M Ward

Ward, Danielle M.

Dr. Nienow

Conducting a molecular assessment of the deep water microbiological composition of Lake Louise to identify the source of anomalous Chlorophyll B peaks.