Mentee Achievements

Annette Kang

Annette Kang – Annette is a Biological Sciences major with an Environmental Sciences minor who joined the lab in spring of 2017 after taking a class with Meghan! Annette’s work with Meghan in 2017 contributed to the 2018 publication “Worker-caste differences in brain investment reflect soldier behavioral specialization” by O’Donnell, Bulova, Barrett, and von Beeren, as well as another ongoing project studying safer insecticides. In the fall of 2017, she was selected to participate in the Bioko Biodiversity Protection Program, which she followed up with a sustainability-focused study abroad in Costa Rica in 2018. In 2018, she also won the DAAD RISE Germany Award, to perform research with O’Donnell lab collaborator Dr. Cristoph von Beeren on the diet preferences in ant-parasite communities, in Darmstadt, Germany. In addition, she is also a 2018-19 Udall Scholar, one of only 50 nationwide,  due to her dedication studying sustainability and the environment. Annette has presented her work from the lab at Drexel University’s Nerd Nite, and has gone on to present her international work multiple times to global audiences; she also has two publications (one a first-author) from a previous research experience her freshman year. In addition, Annette is a passionate leader and mentor, and we can’t wait to have her back in the lab after her time in Germany! Annette hopes to attend graduate school after Drexel, with the goal of becoming a professor.

Cheyenne McNair

Cheyenne McNair – Cheyenne is an Environmental Science major who joined the lab in the summer of her freshman year as a STAR (Students Tackling Advanced Research) student working full time, and has been a star in the lab ever since! Her work over the summer was presented first at the 2017 STAR Summer Showcase, a poster entitled The Pest Relief: Does erythritol act as an insecticide for ants?, which she also presented at the Drexel Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Science Research Day in 2018. Additionally, her work contributed to the poster Does brain structure covary with sociality in spiders? A comparative test in the genus Anelosimus (Araneae: Theridiidae), presented at the 2018 Drexel BEES Research Day by Meghan Barrett. In addition, Cheyenne was awarded the 2018 Espenschade Outstanding Undergraduate Research Achievement Travel Award, presented by the Drexel Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Sciences Department to support the research of an outstanding undergraduate student studying environmental science.  Cheyenne is currently working on the effects of D-mannitol on fruit flies and anticipates attending graduate school after graduation.

Michaela Schuster

Michaela Schuster – Michaela is a Health Sciences major with a minor in anthropology, who joined the O’Donnell lab in the summer of 2017. She presented her collaborative research with Sumaiya Zahid in a poster entitled: Do paper wasps have morphological worker subcastes? A test in the neotropical warrior wasp, Synoeca septentrionalis (Hymenoptera: Vespidae), at the 2018 Drexel Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Sciences Research Symposium. She has since gone on to work on the effects of D-mannitol on fruit flies and credits the O’Donnell lab for helping her realize that she wants research to be her career path moving forward. She is excited to attend graduate school in the Philly region after graduation.

Lauren Hultgren

Lauren Hultgren – Lauren entered the lab in the winter of 2018 to help set up a short experiment but after realizing the awesome power of insects, she decided to stick around! Lauren is interested in veterinary science, and will be graduating in a year with a degree in Environmental Science (concentration in Biodiversity and Evolution). She has helped corral ants for a pesticide project but now spends her time assessing bee ovary development for a collaborative project with the University of Arizona. She also works with Dr. Dane Ward on Urban Ecology projects while interning at a veterinary center learning about (and playing with) dogs.

Angelina Gomez – Angelina is an Environmental Sciences student who just joined the lab in the spring of 2018 after taking a class with Meghan. She is currently working on studying the effects of D-mannitol on fruit flies.

Devneet Kainth –Dev, a Biology major, joined the lab in spring of 2018 after taking a class with Meghan – she is enjoying her first quarter, studying the effects of D-mannitol on fruit flies.

Natalie Carroll – Natalie is a Biology major who joined the lab after taking a class with Meghan in the winter of 2017, and is now on her second co-op in California! She has spent most of her time in the lab learning about arthropod brains; her work contributed to the poster Does brain structure covary with sociality in spiders? A comparative test in the genus Anelosimus (Araneae: Theridiidae), presented at the 2018 Drexel Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Sciences Research Symposium by Meghan Barrett.

Sumaiya Zahid – Sumaiya is a Biology major who joined the lab after taking a class with Meghan in the winter of 2017, until her co-op in the spring of 2018. She was instrumental to the 2018 publication “Worker-caste differences in brain investment reflect soldier behavioral specialization” by O’Donnell, Bulova, Barrett, and von Beeren. She also presented her collaborative research with Michaela Schuster in a poster entitled Do paper wasps have morphological worker subcastes? A test in the neotropical warrior wasp, Synoeca septentrionalis (Hymenoptera: Vespidae), at the 2018 Drexel Biodiversity, Earth, and Environmental Sciences Research Symposium.