Reflections on 2021...
Sparks Lab: Surely we have updated our website in the past few months...
Narrator: They have not.
We opened the lab website to find a draft post from last April starting with the above... that we never completed and shared. DOH. So now we've been years since updating! Where has the time gone?!?!?!
We wanted to take a moment and reflect on the past year. 2021 was a year of professional and personal challenges for many in the lab, but we made it through! And looking back there were some major milestones that we want to recognize:
- Dr. Lindsay Erndwein - the first Sparks Lab PhD student successfully defended her thesis last April! 🥳 Lindsay is now working as a USDA ORISE postdoctoral researcher in New Jersey!
- We got not one, not two, but three new grant awards in 2021! For full details, you can check out our Research Grant Funding page. After years of grant rejections, we are delighted to receive this new funding and forever grateful to the reviewers and funding agencies that believe in our work.
- Along with this new funding, we've just recently had a slew of papers accepted! Former postdoc Adam Stager had a Methods in Molecular Biology paper accepted, Current postdoc Ashley Hostetler had a Plant, Cell & Environment paper accepted, and Ashley & Lindsay were co-first author on a manuscript that was conditionally accepted at Annals of Botany! Check out our Publications page for full details. So much to celebrate!!!
- We also have an amazing team of undergraduate and high school students that joined us for internships this past summer and have continued to do research in our lab this school year! We're grateful for their hard work and enthusiasm for science!
As we look forward to 2022, we are optimistic for the future of the Sparks lab. We have new people joining us - stay tuned for intro & bios later this semester, have new funding to be announced, and a few more papers in the pipeline!
We wish all of our friends, collaborators, and colleagues a joyful 2022 and hope to see you all in person one day soon.