Summer 2022 update

It’s been a hot hot hot summer here in Memphis! Undergraduate Kimberly Baldwin joined the lab on a CBio summer internship. Her project “Who’s who in the Zoo Poo” investigates the insect communities found in animal dung at the Memphis Zoo, and Shelby Farms. I now find myself looking at any doggie leftovers on the sidewalk to see who’s taken up residence! Needless to say, I’ve had some very interesting conversations with strangers this summer. #SciComm

Academically, I got two first author papers submitted (one a minor revision (fingers crossed!), and another “fresh” for reviewers’ eyes). And another grant is ready to be submitted, this time to USDA. In the interests of normalizing “failure”, my first NSF grant submission was not funded. We got good, useful feedback from the review panel, so we’ll continue to pursue this in the future. Fingers crossed!

Kimberly Baldwin and Dr. Boardman stand outside the Memphis Zoo
Day 1 of summer research at the Memphis Zoo! Bring on the poo 🙂

Spring 2022 update

This semester started early with uploading a presentation for SICB+*. Here I presented on how physiology data can be used to improve invasion science – work that originated at an NSF workshop in 2019. *I was looking forward to another in-person conference, but I wasn’t happy travelling during the omicron wave without being boostered (I only qualified for my booster in Feb, as I received my first doses in August when I arrived back in the USA – I was still too young in South Africa to get vaccinated at that point!).

The Boardman Lab is slowly growing and will start “researching” soon! Several new faces will soon populate the lab, including graduate student/s, a summer intern, and UofM (w)undergrads! I spent the semester working on papers, and grants, and recently got word that my first submitted co-PI grant as a new PI was awarded! More on this once everything is official.

Outside the lab, I also started a Friday biology sand volleyball group as a way to celebrate the end of the week and kick off (or should this be spike off? :)) the weekend. I also joined sand volleyball and soccer leagues here in Memphis to get my sport fix in!

Six people playing sand volleyball on a sunny afternoon
Biology Volleyball in action!

Fall 2021 update

What a blur! This semester went bye in the blink of an eye. Setting up my lab, co-teaching my first undergrad course, and a return to full time “sciencing” after my hiatus at home was all quite an adjustment. Dodging COVID, getting vaccinated, and trying to make friends in a new city were also on the agenda!

I gave a presentation at EntSoc meeting in Denver (see photo below) on some of the honey bee mitochondrial genome work I completed as a postdoc at UF HBREL. It was really strange being back at a conference, but the opportunity to reconnect with Entomology friends, talk to collaborators in-person, and learn about cool new science, was much needed. I also visited the Denver Botanic Gardens before my flight home and found the South African plaza – a garden showcasing South Africa’s plant diversity! What a fun surprise to unexpectantly find memories of home.

On a personal note, I also ran my first marathon: the St. Jude Memphis Marathon! It wasn’t fast, but it was surprisingly fun. This may need to be an annual fixture on my calendar…

Dr. Boardman stands outside the Denver Convention Center with the "big blue bear" statue in the background
Outside the Denver Convention Centre with the “big blue bear” statue. The art is actually named “I See What You Mean”!

Headed to Memphis!

After a COVID-coaster induced delay, the Boardman Lab will open it’s doors in Fall 2021 in the University of Memphis’ Department of Biological Sciences. Our evolutionary animal physiology lab will work mainly with insects to answer questions relating to mechanisms of stress tolerance, invasion biology, and pest-management. More information will become available on the Research page over the next couple of months.

I will also be looking to recruit graduate student(s) to start in Fall 2022. Interested students should look at the UofM Departments Graduate program webpage, and are welcome to contact me to discuss potential projects.