Kayla Sherman, '16

August 14, 2015
Senior spends summer researching newts and moths

A self-described outdoor lover, Kayla Sherman, ’16, spent her summer taking the term “field experience” literally.

Sherman, who grew up in King William County, conducted research on both the eastern red-spotted newt and the European gypsy moth while working in the Mountain Lake Biological Station in Pembroke, which is located in the mountains of Virginia near Blacksburg.

Under the guidance of Kristine Grayson, an assistant professor of biology, Sherman, a biology major and environmental studies minor, researched migration patterns and habitats of the newts and conducted experiments related to the growth of the moths.

Sherman, who plans to pursue a career working with animals, says, “This research fit great into my future plans because it was mostly field work and less lab work.”

Sherman says one of the best parts of this research experience was meeting other student researchers and professors. She describes this opportunity as both educational and fun.

She is among nearly 500 UR students who participated in the 2015 UR Summer Fellowship program. Under The Richmond Guarantee, the University has committed to providing these fellowships for one summer research or internship experience for all traditional undergraduate students.

“I am interested in conservation and animal behavior, and this opportunity was a step in the right direction,” she said. “I think the URSF program is amazing, and I am very grateful that UR provides us with so many opportunities to conduct research.”