I’m gay and I’m a biology MS student. //
I’ve always been the crazy bird guy. I grew up in rural north Mississippi surrounded by forest and spent my time roaming the woods looking for quail and woodpeckers, and waited every year for my grandparents to take me across the river to Arkansas to see the migrating snow geese. I received my BS in biology from Middle Tennessee State University, where I conducted undergrad research in wetland ecology. After graduation I spent time in the field at various short-term volunteer positions, and as an avian intern at the Nashville Zoo. While working with the Hooded Grebe Project in Argentina, I took a side trip to visit a penguin colony and that ignited a passion for seabird conservation. Currently, I am studying Fiordland crested penguins/tawaki on New Zealand’s South Island as my MS thesis at Marshall University. I want to understand their foraging ecology through the use of stable isotopes. I plan to continue in the realm of seabird or waterbird conservation and ecology and am currently looking for PhD opportunities. I hope to be able to help other LGBTQ students who may also come from rural backgrounds to pursue their passions in STEM, even if it takes them to the other side of the world.