For this assignment, I chose to interview Dr. Stuart McDaniel, an assistant professor at the University of Florida. Since Dr. McDaniel was a child, he loved the outdoors and was always interested in backpacking. He had a specific interest for maps and the distribution of plants. Plants on mountain tops never ceased to amaze him. He received is Bachelors of Science in biology from Oberlin College. In 1994, he moved to Paraguay as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Agroforestry department. After that, he embarked his journey with moss biodiversity at the New York State Museum. Subsequently, he received his doctorate from Duke University with Jon Shaw, a professor of biology at Duke University. After that, he finished a NIH-NRSA postdoc fellowship at Washington University in St. Louis. He joined the University of Florida’s biology department in 2009.
Dr. McDaniel’s lab is located in Carr Hall room 213. His lab consists of eight undergraduates and two graduate students. Undergraduates are responsible for sterilizing plants in nature, growing those plants in the lab and quantifying their features. They are also responsible for DNA extractions, genetic analysis of plants and biological informatics of genome sequencing. The types of equipment used in his lab are freezers, centrifuge, gel electrophoresis for studying the quality of DNA, PCR machines, pipettes, various glassware, and growth chambers.
The main questions his lab is trying to answer are of the following:
1. How common…