Honorable Mention, People's Choice
This past summer I had the opportunity to participate in an NSF Research Experience for Undergrads here at ISU with Dr. Diane Byers. The focus of our research revolved around conservation and ecology of prairies in Illinois and Kansas, which are extremely threatened and important ecosystems of the Midwest. Our research examines how the precipitation gradient that exists between Kansas and Illinois affects the local adaptation of prairie species, including the rosinweed plant pictured here. My research was split between working in the lab washing and harvest sample prairie plants and working the horticultural center weeding and measuring plots. I was able to go into the field often, and even to several prairies around ISU and some in Kansas, which is where this image came from. I learned a lot more about the importance of prairies throughout the summer and will be continuing to work with Dr. Byers through my senior year.
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