Graduate Students

Pam Laureto is doing her Ph. D. research on plants native to Michigan and the Great Lakes region. Specifically, she is trying to understand the origin and conservation genetic status of the Great Lakes endemic Solidago houghtonii. Pam received her M.S. in 1996 from Western Michigan University studying the flora of Seidman Park in Kent County, Michigan. She is currently a faculty member at Grand Rapids Community College and is the president of the Michigan Botanical Club.
To contact Pam Email her at:

Beth Whately
is doing her Ph. D. research on the Lake Huron tansy (Tanacetum huronense). She will be looking at the population genetics and taxonomy of this state threatened species. Beth received her M.S. from Central Michigan University in 2004 where she conducted a floristic inventory of Hog Island, an uninhabited member of the Beaver Island Archipelago. To contact Beth, e-mail her at:

Jamie Lim is pursuing her Ph. D. in the study of Rafflesia, the largest flower in the world. Rafflesia is a rare and threatened root parasite that occurs only on the islands of Southeast Asia. The main objectives of her dissertation are:
1.) Resolving the phylogeny of the genus
2.) Placement of the family within the global Angiosperm phylogeny
3.) Assessing population genetics of Rafflesia population in Sabah.
Jamie received her B.S. in Genetics and Conservation from the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) in 2000. To contact Jamie, e-mail her at

Undergraduate Students

Talline Robadey is an undergradute at WMU working towards her B.S. in Biological Sciences. Talline has been working on evolutionary studies of the nuclear gene, salicyic acid methyltransferase (SAMT). Thus far she has estimated Solanaceae (Potato Family) phylogeny using SAMT and is now studying expression patterns of the gene to test hypotheses of convergent or parallel evolution of floral scent in the family. To contact Talline, e-mail her at

Nabeeh Hasan
is an undergraduate at WMU working towards his B.S. in Biological Sciences. In collaboration with Joel R. McNeal (from Pennsylvania State University), Nabeeh has been working on producing a cDNA library for Cuscuta exaltata developing haustoria and making evolutionary inferences about whether the isolated nuclear genes of this parasite are evolving under relaxed selective constraint. To contact Nabeeh, e-mail him at: