Department of BiologyUniversity of Wisconsin Oshkosh

Information for prospective students:

We are always looking for motivated students interested in the study of entomology! Research is a key part of the biology major at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, and in addition to independent study credit, many small grants and assistantships are available to support undergraduate research during the semester or over the summer. The university also offers a comprehensive Master's program in Biology. Undergraduate and graduate students interested in pursuing research in the lab are encouraged to contact Dr. Mitchell for more information.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Robert F. Mitchell

Assistant Professor, Department of Biology
Curriculum vitae

Rob Mitchell received his bachelor's degree in Biology at Duke University, a Master's and PhD from the Department of Entomology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and completed a 3-year postdoctoral tour in the Department of Neuroscience at the University of Arizona, via the NIH-funded PERT program. He studies the chemical ecology of insects, and is especially interested in the olfactory biology of beetles. He is also curator of the UW-Oshkosh Insect Collection, a regional collection of approximately 200,000 specimens.

When he manages to have a life outside academics, he enjoys hiking, photography, fiddling with graphical editing software, and spending time with his wife and son, who are unbelievably tolerant of the frozen insects that fill their freezer.

Graduate Students

Doua Yang

Doua joined the lab in Spring 2017, and is studying how the architecture of the antennal lobe relates to pheromone use in cerambycid beetles. Doua's research is supported by a UWO Graduate Student/Faculty Collaborative Research Grant; read more about it here!.

Lyndsay Poeschl

Lyndsay joined the lab in Fall 2017, and is studying the form and function of stridulatory plates in wood-boring beetles.

Undergraduate Researchers

Nicole Peters

Nicole is a senior biology major who has been volunteering in the lab since Spring 2018 and assisting with electron microscopy of cerambycid beetles.

Maria Nummerdor

Maria is a junior anthropology major who joined the lab in Fall 2018. She is identifying calyptrate flies of central Wisconsin and curating the UWOIC's muscid, sarcophagid, and callophorid collections.

Audra Jenson

Audra is a senior biology major who joined the lab in Fall 2018, and is assisting in the annotation of olfactory genes from numerous species of beetles.

Rachel McKay

Rachel is a junior biology major who joined the lab in Spring 2019. She has received a McNair scholarship to support her research on the chemosensory biology of beetles!

Collection Assistants

Ben App

Ben is a senior environmental health major and joined the collection team in Fall 2016. He is responsible for maintaining the pinned collection, as well as databasing and processing new specimens.

Evan Laplant

Evan is also a senior environmental health major and joined the collection team in Fall 2018. Evan assists in maintenance of the alcohol collection and in cataloging several decades of bulk stream samples from northern Wisconsin.

Lab Alumni

Troy Schneider
Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2016-2018
Annotation of olfactory receptors from numerous beetle genomes.

Kyle Kettner
Collections Assistant, 2017-2018
Assisted in maintenance of the UWO Insect Collection.

Allison Clausen
Biology Independent Study, 2017
Effects of flooding and drought on the volatile production of wild lupine.

Amber All
Collections Assistant, 2016-2017
Assisted in maintenance of the UWO Insect Collection.

Sean Kirkpatrick
Biology Independent Study, 2016
Effect of urbanization on species composition of longhorned beetles.

Adam Schwartz
Undergraduate Research Assistant, 2015-2016
Annotation of olfactory genes from the genome of the emerald ash borer.