Hello and Goodbye, Carleton Externs!

You might think three weeks is too short a time to conduct research, but our 2023 Carleton College externs can prove you wrong! We just said goodbye to 4 undergraduate students who spent their winter break in our lab at Chicago Botanic Garden. During this time, they processed data, explored statistics, dove into the world of R, and learned more about the research objectives of the Echinacea Project. All of this contributed to their investigations into research questions of their own. The externs were also able to explore Chicago and the gardens, and connect with other scientists.

Rebecca and Vo worked with Jared to investigate effects of fire on reproduction in Andropogon gerardii. They developed methods for quantifying seed set in Andropogon, and put them into practice during the externship! Learn more about them and their research here and here!

Io worked with Abby and Wyatt to investigate vegetative and reproductive patterns in Echinacea Angustifolia. She was specifically interested in understanding how traits like basal leaf count and longest basal leaf length over time may influence reproductive effort. Read more about her project here.

Conlan worked with Abby and Wyatt to investigate structural reproductive traits and their relationship with pollination success. He wondered if taller head heights and larger head numbers led to higher pollination rates. Read more about what he found here!

There was some disagreement as to whether we were saying, “Echinacea” or “Andropogon” in our group picture this year. No matter- the photo still turned out nicely!

It was a pleasure to work with these 4 externs this year! We wish them the best!


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