Featured Entomology graduate student Colin O’Neil
Learn more about our featured graduate student Colin O’Neil and why he chose to study entomology.
Name: Colin O'Neil
Hometown or state: Michigan
Previous education: University of Michigan
Major professor: Dave Smitley
What are you researching? Pollinator attractiveness of popular annuals and perennials.
Why study entomology? I took an insect diversity class during my undergrad, and it completely changed my life. I was studying mycology at the time, but I've never looked back. More people should study entomology because it would help them better understand the importance of biodiversity and how it relates to food security.
What or who inspired your interest in entomology? Brian Scholtens, the professor of the aforementioned life-changing insect course, and Matt McGuffie, a classmate and eventual best friend.
What is your favorite activity or responsibility as part of your graduate studies? Words can't express how much I love teaching. Every semester, my students were interested in the class material, and they treated me with respect.
What is your favorite insect? Parasitoid wasps, because they are incredibly successful at fulfilling a rather niche reproductive strategy. They parasitize every life stage of other insects, they parasitize non-insects and they even parasitize each other.
What is your favorite activity/way to spend your time outside of your studies? Catching and pinning insects, or spending time with my significant other, sometimes both!
Read about our past featured students.