Tropical Plant Systematics Course: May 10th to May 26th, 2007. Studied and researched tropical rain forests in Ecuador with an emphasis on plant diversity and conservation. Documented evolutionary patterns of plant and animal interaction that exhibit co-evolution. Studied components essential for rainforest ecosystems. Explored forests in the Yanacocha Reserve, Tiputini Biodiversity Station, and the Bilsa Biological Station.
Fern Collection Project: May 18th to May 20th, 2007. Established a plot in a lowland rain forest of Western Ecuador to document fern diversity. Forty-five different genera of fern were collected and identified. Specimens were then donated to the University of Alabama Herbarium (UNA) and the National Herbarium of Ecuador (QCNE).
Tropical Plant Systematics DVD: July 15th to August 12th, 2007. Compiled images from the Tropical Plant Systematics course into videos using programs such as iPhoto and iDVD. Created and distributed copies for all fourteen members of the course.
Tropical Terrarium Project: October 14th to October 24th, 2007. Studied indoor-growing techniques and acquired the special equipment necessary (e.g., misters, timers, and growing lights) to create artificial tropical environments suitable for keeping tropical plants alive. Consulted with horticulturalists from New York, Atlanta, and Vanderbilt to establish protocols for cultivating live collections.
Plant Collection Project: March 10th to May 4th, 2008. Successfully collected, pressed, identified, and presented fifty different plants indigenous of Alabama for use in the Scientific Collection Building at the University of Alabama. The use of herbarium, professors, and the Internet helped to classify specimens. Identification labels were then created to accommodate mounted specimens.
First Annual Undergraduate Research Conference: April 21st, 2008. Co-Author for oral presentation presented at the First Annual Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Conference. C. Coleman, R. Pritchard, K. Ross, and E. Dunkerley. 2008. Shuaria (Gesneriaceae), a new flowering plant genus from the Cordillera del Cóndor and Amazonian Ecuador.