students & staff

Shreya Banerjee 
Molecular Laboratory Technician

Shreya grew up on the San Francisco Peninsula, where her interest in wildlife and marine biology was sparked at a young age by frequent camping and hiking trips, beach days, and visits to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Her interest was solidified during her field quarter abroad in Costa Rica and she graduated with a BS in Environmental Systems: Ecology, Behavior, and Evolution from UC San Diego in 2016. She recently completed a MS in marine biology at Scripps Institution of Oceanography where she collaborated with the Marine Turtle Genetics Program at NOAA Southwest Fisheries to study the implications of multiple paternity on morphological variation in leatherback sea turtle hatchlings at Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge in St. Croix, USVI. She is excited to learn more about using molecular techniques to understand anthropogenic influences on aquatic organisms and ecosystems.


Jamie Adkins-Stoll 
IMS Master’s student

Jamie is originally from the California Bay Area, and moved to southern California to earn a bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology at Cal Poly Pomona. Prior to graduating, Jamie worked in several molecular and behavioral neuroscience research laboratories. Following graduation, she applied her molecular biology knowledge to her passion – wildlife conservation. Jamie worked as a Research Associate at San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research in the Disease Investigations Laboratory, where she studied disease transmission in desert tortoises, and performed molecular diagnostics for wild and captive animals. Jamie grew up camping and hiking all over California, and continued to backpack throughout the U.S. and southeast Asia after graduating from college. These experiences motivated her to continue working to conserve wildlife and the landscapes she loves, and pursue a master’s degree in conservation.


Nadia Fernandez20180814_191126
ECo PhD student

Nadia grew up in Indiana and recently completed her M.S. in Conservation Genetics at Purdue University. Her thesis incorporated utilizing genetics/genomics to investigate genomic disparities of golden eagle populations in southern California.  She is advised by Drs. Lisa Komoroske and Andy Danylchuck where she will be utilizing genomic techniques to assess the population structure and the health of the golden dorado which resides in South America. She is interested in working with locals to understand the biology of this captivating fish species as she will also seek to ask evolutionary questions to gain a deeper understanding of its capabilities. Overall, she’s interested in the application of genetics to wildlife populations and management but also, asking evolutionary questions to understand how different species may handle various ecological pressures they may face in the future. On her time off, she loves to enjoy live music, binge TV shows, and challenge herself at the gym. 


JS_BanffJohn Swenson
OEB PhD student

John grew up in Washington State and recently received his Master’s degree from San Francisco State University. Using cownose rays (Rhinoptera bonasus) as his study system, John’s thesis research shed light on the genetic underpinnings of cephalic lobe evolution in myliobatid stingrays (cownose rays, manta rays, eagle rays) and described the process by which this unique body plan develops. While conducting fieldwork for his thesis, John developed a great appreciation for cownose rays and respect for the commercial fishermen who catch them. Therefore, his current research endeavors to inform fisheries management of cownose rays using a framework that fuses cutting-edge genomic techniques with population dynamics modeling. Broadly, he aims to demonstrate how combining these approaches can enable and improve management of other vulnerable elasmobranch species. Besides research and teaching, John enjoys practicing yoga, smiling, and playing in nature.


tanyalamaTanya Lama
PhD Candidate

Tanya is a PhD Candidate in the Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, supervised by Drs. Stephen DeStefano and John Organ. Her research involves genomic assessment of wildlife populations, particularly Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis), and the intersection of science and policy with regard to listing and managing species at risk. She enjoys hiking, reading, and making pottery in her free time.


Vipheaviny_bio picVipheaviny Chea
Undergraduate researcher

Vipheaviny grew up in Nashua, New Hampshire, where she spent her time either in the swimming pool or at school, diving head first into the sciences. She continues to explore the massive field of biology as an undergraduate student and is in pursuit of a minor in biochemistry and molecular biology. She is also in the Commonwealth Honors College and is currently on the path towards medical school. In addition, Vipheaviny looks forward to learning and utilizing the molecular laboratory techniques that have the capacity to connect so many scientific worlds. When she isn’t engrossed in her studies, she fulfills her love for swimming at the beach and enjoys spending time with her friends and family.


Join us!  If you are interested in joining our research group, please see the opportunities page.