Current Members

Dr. Iliana Baums PI

Iliana serves as Associate Professor of Molecular Ecology in the Department of Biology at Penn State. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Miami using microsatellite markers to look at clonal population structure and geographic variation in the Caribbean elkhorn coral Acropora palmata. She completed a post doc at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology. Her research involves developing and applying molecular tools to understand the consequences of biogeography, population structure, and mating patterns to the survival and evolution of marine organisms.

Meghann K. Devlin-Durante Lab Manager

Meghann serves as lab manager. She is an alum of Penn State, where she received her Master's degree in Molecular Medicine. Meghann is involved in all aspects of work in the lab and even provides support in the field.

Andie Chan Graduate Student

Andie is a Ph.D. student in Ecology. She completed her undergraduate degree at UCLA where she studied cryptic species and species interactions in coral reef fishes and invertebrates from the Coral Triangle. Broadly, she is interested in the ability of coral reef environments to persist in the coming century with the projected increases in global temperatures and ocean acidification.

Sam Vohsen Graduate Student

Sam is a Ph.D. student in Biology. He is interested in the effect of anthropogenic and natural oil and hydrocarbon exposure on deep-sea coral. He uses untargeted metabolomics to fingerprint the effect of exposure and to identify potential biomarkers.

Dr. Sheila Kitchen Post Doc

Sheila is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab studying coral hybridization as an adaptive mechanism to global climate change. She is broadly interested in understanding cellular processes and molecular pathways that underlie cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis. Specifically, she explores how environmental disturbances can alter this partnership across different developmental stages or genetic backgrounds. Her postdoctoral project will involve genomic sequencing, population structure and admixture analyses to characterize the hybridization of Caribbean acroporids.

Kyle Trabocco Undergraduate

Kyle is a sophmore majoring in Biology.

Gavin Vanstone Undergraduate

Gavin is a junior majoring in Biology. He is studying the population genetics of the Pacific coral Porites lobata in the Phoenix Islands.

Jesse Mee Undergraduate

Jesse is studying general Biology and is set to graduate in 2017. He works between the Baums and Fisher labs predominately with metabolomics to identify differences in coral populations based on the metabolites present in the organisms.

Macklin Elder Undergraduate

Macklin is an undergraduate student assistant working in the Baums lab. His major is Biomedical Engineering, with the chemical option. He is interested in molecular biology and its application to coral ecology.

Past Graduate Students

  • Dr. Dannise Ruiz Ramos | 2015
  • Dr. John E. Parkinson | 2015
  • Dr. Jennifer Boulay | 2015
  • Dr. Nick Polato | 2012

Past Post Docs

  • Dr. Dustin Kemp
  • Dr. Rahel Salathé
  • Dr. Nick Polato
  • Dr. John E. Parkinson

Past Undergraduate Students

  • Andrew Samulewicz | 2016
  • Alaina Weinheimer | 2016
  • Olivia Kerrigan | 2016
  • Devon McCrossen | 2015
  • Caitlin Kupp | 2015
  • Rene Clark | 2014
  • Beatrice Ajeng Laing | 2013
  • Shane Denecke | 2012
  • Sharmila Giri | 2011
  • Kevin McAndrew | 2011
  • Dongchen Xu | 2010
  • Nadia Abidi | 2010
  • Lakeia Y. Brown | 2008