Undergraduate Research

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Want to be an undergraduate intern in the Hawley lab?

The most common way to get an internship in the Hawley lab is to take the Honors Genetics course (BIO206H) co-taught by Dr. Hawley and Dr. Honigberg at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. This gives Dr. Hawley a chance to get to know you, and it gives you a strong background in genetics. We usually ask students to work in the lab for credit for at least a semester. Additionally, Stowers offers a fantastic summer program, Summer Scholars, which we encourage students to apply for if they plan to work over the summer. Unfortunately, we are unable to accept high school students as interns.


Current Undergraduates

Alyssa Jones Photo

Alyssa Jones, UMKC Undergraduate

Pursuing an internship at Stowers has been one of the most challenging, yet most rewarding experiences of my life. I feel so fortunate to be where I am today. I have found that the research and professional experience I have gained at Stowers is invaluable. When I first started, I didn’t have any idea what real and meaningful research involved. Work in the laboratory instantly brought to life content I had learned in my biology and chemistry courses. As an undergraduate in the lab, I am helping to investigate how mutation of an E3 ubiquitin ligase causes synaptonemal complex (SC) components to form polycomplexes. Studying thesemutants helps us understand how structural components of the SC interact in both polycomplexes and normal SC, and, potentially, how SC assembly is regulated. Through my journey here, I have unveiled the beauty of curiosity. Being an undergraduate researcher has ignited my passion for pursuing a career in the world of biomedical sciences.

Emily Wesley Photo

Emily Wesley, UMKC Undergraduate

I have worked as an Intern in the Hawley lab since January 2018 under the guidance of Dr. Katie Billmyre, a postdoctoral researcher. My project includes assisting with experiments on the SC protein component C(3)G. I am analyzing the effects that changes to this particular SC protein have on various aspects of meiosis. I am also beginning experiments to analyze what impact, if any, different wild-type strains of Drosophila have on SC maintenance when heterozygous over a c(3)g null allele. Working as an intern in Dr. Hawley's lab has been an invaluable experience, allowing me to more fully appreciate the process of scientific discovery that enables us to understand specific aspects of biology (meiosis, in this case) that have never been explored previously. Being able to apply biological concepts that I have learned at UMKC and to conduct independent experiments has enabled me to grow my curiosity and love of science and encouraged me to explore all of the opportunities available for a future career in science. I would definitely recommend the experience to others who are eager to become closely involved with the research process and who have a desire to directly engage with the beautiful field of biology. 

Featured Alumni

Emily Wesley Photo

Elizabeth Hemenway, Current MIT Graduate Student

The Hawley lab is very dedicated to training undergraduates, and I benefited immensely from the time and experience of everyone in the lab, especially my research mentor, Dr. Stacie Hughes. I worked on multiple projects in the Hawley lab but mainly focused on SC polycomplex formation during female meiosis. During my time as an undergraduate in the lab, I learned how to think critically about scientific problems and found I really enjoy working on basic research questions, which was a major reason why I decided to go to grad school. 


Undergraduate Alumni Since 2001

If you are an undergraduate alumnus of the Hawley lab and want to update your current position, please contact us!

Name Current Position (if known)
Aaron Noll* Physician and Data Scientist, Cerner Corporation, Kansas City, MO
Abby Markel  
Alexandra Arvanitakis* Medical Student, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
Alexandria Cockrell* MD/PhD Student, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
Alexandria Voight Biological Scientist, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Allie Ranallo Undergraduate, University of Nebraska
Amanda Bonner** Predoctoral Researcher, Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Kansas City, MO
Ana Mitchell  
Andrew Richardson  
Angela (Seat) Miller* Seattle, Washington
Annabelle Hendrix  
Bhani Singh  
Brianna Kneib  
Cailey McClurken*  
Camila Aponte  
Cara Rachals  
Christina Pucci  
Christine Smoyer Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California, Davis
Colin Herman  
Colleen Reilly  
Dana Vietti* M.D. - Hospitalist, Saint Luke’s Hospital, Kansas City, MO
Daniel Agne* Pediatric Anesthesiologist, Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO
Danny Miller** Pediatrics/Medical Genetics Resident/Fellow, Seattle Children’s Hospital/University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Elizabeth Bauerly** Predoctoral Researcher, Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Kansas City, MO
Elizabeth Belden* Brew Master
Elizabeth Hemenway* Graduate Student, MIT, Boston, MA
Elizabeth Porto Graduate Student, University of California, San Diego, CA
Ellen Reid  
Emily Grantham Graduate Student, University of Texas, Austin, TX
Isabella Cianciolo Pharmaceutical Sales Rep, Sanofi Pasteur, Minneapolis, MN
Jennifer Anderson  
Jennifer Samson Clinical Study Director, QuintilesIMS, Overland Park, KS
Jessica Kay  
Jingping Lu Postdoctoral Fellow, Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute, Orlando, FL
Jon Chambers  
Jonathan Callicoat*  
Jordan Serati Kansas University Nursing School
Joshua Linnell  
Julian Carrier  
Kathy Lindstrom  
Kelsey Kaeding Graduate Student, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
Kevin Grantham Lead Scientist, Catalent Pharma Solutions, Kansas City, MO
Kim Box* Graduate Student, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ
Kristen Dean*  
Kristin Burns M.D.
Laura Hollar M.D., Kansas University Medical Center
Lauren Bernard  
LeAnna Cates  
Liz Vandruff  
Mackenzie Sievert Graduate Student, University of Notre Dame, IN
Madeleine Gurney Medical Student, Kansas University Medical School
Maria Gentry Medical Student, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Marissa Pelot*  
Matt Leming Medical Device Analyst, Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX
Matthew Heenan Medical Student, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
Matthew Sturgeon  
Matthew Tingle  
Max Courington  
Melanie Ball  
Merrill Thomas  
Michael Anderson  
Michelle Gabbert  
Mindy Ashby Calibration Systems Administrative Technician, Nostrum Laboratories Inc., Kansas City, MO
Nazanin Kazemi* MD/PhD Student, Mayo Medical School, Rochester, MN
Nghia Nguyen  
Nicole Chalmers  
Nicole Nuckolls Predoctoral Researcher, Graduate School of the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Kansas City, MO
Nicole Schweppe*  
Philip Hawkins  
Rachel Frische Resident Physician, University of North Carolina Chapel HiIl, NC
Roxana Fu* Assistant Professor, Ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute, Baltimore, MD
Scott Beeler** MD/PhD Student, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
Seng Kai Ong* Senior Lecturer, Sunway University, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Sharon Thomas  
Tara Proffitt  
Tom Newell  
Toni Eckert  
Tracy Strahle  
Whitney Fancher  
Whitney McBride  
Yosafe Wakwaya  
*Denotes students whose work appeared in publications.
**Denotes students with first-author papers.