Leveraging the enthusiasm of over 200 citizen scientists, Kate’s dissertation is born out of a partnership with Virginians across the Commonwealth collecting mason bees (genus Osmia) to assess wild bee health and diversity. These efforts have elucidated mechanisms as to why native mason bee species are declining in the mid-Atlantic United States, which is a story involving invasive bees, exotic fungal infections, and climate change. In collecting data for her dissertation, Kate has closely mentored over thirty UVA undergraduates from various major disciplines, including economics, chemistry, anthropology, and environmental sciences. Kate has four forthcoming publications from her dissertation, and she has given over fifty presentations to members of the University of Virginia, the public, and national academic meetings. Kate is also the recipient of a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship, and she has initiated and executed research collaborations with Cornell University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Kate will complete her dissertation in in the 2020-2021 academic year with a Jefferson Scholars Foundation Dissertation Year Fellowship.
Rapid spread of exotic mason bees (genus Osmia) and their potential risks to native Osmia species in the Commonwealth of Virginia, USA