Student Researchers


Whitney Dobbyn

Whitney will be a Senior Biology major this next year and is also part of the Honors Program at George Fox University.  She joined the lab in Fall 2020 and is funded by the Richter Scholar Program.  This will be Whitney’s second year as part of the lab.  Last year she worked on characterizing the annual cycle of Anna’s hummingbird here in the Willamette Valley.  This year, after a two-year hiatus due to Covid-19, Whitney will travel with the lab to the Southwestern Research Station (SWRS) in the Chiricahua Mountains of SE Arizona to study the nature of heat transfer from the body core through the plumage in hummingbirds.  After graduation Whitney is interested in graduate school and a career in basic research.


Emily Blackwell

Emily will be a Senior Biology major next year.  She joined the lab in Fall 2020 and is funded by the Richter Scholar Program.  Emily gets to be a night owl as her focus has been studies of hummingbird torpor.  Last year as she studied nocturnal torpor in Anna’s hummingbird.  This year Emily takes her show on the road with the lab to the Southwestern Research Station (SWRS) to study torpor in blue-throated mountain-gems, Rivoli’s hummingbirds and black-chinned hummingbirds.  Specifically she hopes to become the first to simultaneously measure both metabolic rate using open-flow respirometry and surface temperature using thermal imaging to confirm that surface temperature is a good index for metabolic state in hummingbirds.  Emily will do this work in collaboration with Dr. Anusha Shankar, Rose Postdoctoral Fellow at Cornell University, who will be coming to the lab to do genomics work associated with hummingbird torpor in this Summer.  


Kendra Geer

Kendra will be a Senior Biology major next year.  This is Kendra’s first year in the lab.  She is funded by the Richter Scholar Program.  Kendra’s work will focus on hummingbird choice of microclimate as temperatures change over the course of the day.  To do this she will use IR imaging of birds at specific perching locations, temperature measurements with iButtons, wind and humidity data, as well as behavioral observation.  Kendra’s ultimate goal is to provide better understanding of the specific microclimates selected by hummingbirds as they navigate their day.


Emma Ortiz

Emma will be a Senior Biology major next year.  Although this is not Emma’s first year as an undergraduate researcher (she previously worked in Dr. Paige Parry’s lab) this is her first year as part of the Powers Lab.  She is funded by the Richter Scholar Program.  Emma’s project is somewhat of a companion project to what was described above for Kendra.  Instead of focusing on the hummingbirds themselves Emma will be looking at the details of the thermal environments selected by hummingbirds over a range of natural environmental temperatures.  She will also be looking at the thermal characteristics of locations that hummingbirds have chosen not to use at various times of day.  Emma is hopeful that her study will help us to better understand natural temperature tolerances of hummingbirds that sometimes must endure warm daytime temperatures.




Audrey Smith (Recent GFU Graduate), Tiffany Regier (Recent GFU Graduate), Whitney Dobbyn (Continuing), Emily Blackwell (Continuing)


Audrey Smith (Recent GFU Graduate), Tiffany Regier (Recent GFU Graduate)


Elliot Shannon (Ph.D. Student), Nathaniel Shiiki (GFU Graduate)


Natalie Amodei (GFU Graduate), Sarah Thompson (GFU Graduate)


Isabelle Hoyven Cisneros (DPT), Emma Bloomquist, Kaheela Reid


Julie Litchfield (DNP student, University of Southern Maine), Elizah Stephens (Ph.D. student, University of California, Riverside), Nathan Weston (Medical Student, Case Western University)


Noemi Camacho (research technician), Rosalee Elting (Research Technician, University of Washington)


Noemi Camacho (research technician), Joseph Canepa (applying to MAT program), Sara Nutter (graduate School – art), Rebecca Schroeder (Ranger, US National Park Service)


Joseph Canepa (Teacher), Kathleen Langland (marine science research), Rebecca Schroeder (Ranger, US National Park Service)


John Luke Andrew (Dentalist), Elliott Davis (Medical School Student), Kathleen Langland (marine science research)


Ryan Lane (Postdoctoral Fellow), Kyle Maki, Paige (Copenhaver) Parry (Ph.D., faculy GFU)


Keely Corder (Ph.D. Candidate, U of Montana), Ryan Lane (Postdoctoral Fellow), Jessi-Ann Michaelson (nurse practicioner)


Jessi-Ann Michaelson (nurse practicioner), Seth Monson (dentist)


Jessi-Ann Michaelson (nurse practicioner), Seth Monson (dentist), Travis Schroeder (physician)


Kevin Watanabe-Smith (Ph.D., OHSU)


Philip Getsinger (dentist)