School of Integrative Biology

School of Integrative Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

News & Features



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Laboratory Coordinator JOB OPENING

To apply go to:

Instructor/Lecturer JOB OPENING

To apply go to:

Research Specialist in Animal Biology JOB OPENING

(Position filled January 2014)

Department of Plant Biology Assistant Professor in PLant Metabolic Systems JOB OPENING

(Position filled March 2014)

SIB Assistant Professor in Genomics and Bioinformatics JOB OPENING

To apply go to:

Visiting Research Specialist School of Integrative Biology and Department of Entomology JOB OPENING

(Position filled August 2013)

Academic Advisor-School of Integrative Biology

(Position filled July 2013)

Senior Research Programmer/Research Programmer
School of Integrative Biology and the School of Molecular and Cellular Biology

(Position filled March 2013)

SoyFACE Research Coordinator, Department of Plant Biology, School of Integrative Biology JOB OPENING

(Position filled December 2012)

Assistant, Associate or Full Professor of Quantitative Ecology, School of Integrative Biology JOB OPENING

(Position filled January 2013)

Harley Jones Van Cleave Professor Host-Parasite Interactions, Department of Animal Biology, School of Integrative Biology JOB OPENING

(Search was suspended)

Visiting Research Specialist School of Integrative Biology and Department of Animal Biology JOB OPENING

(Position filled July 2012)

Assistant OR Associate Professor in Integrative Insect Biology, School of Integrative Biology and Department of Entomology JOB OPENING

(Position filled September 2012)


Research Programmer School of Integrative Biology/School of Molecular and Cellular Biology JOB OPENING

(Position filled July 2012)


SIB Professor and Students Use Technology to Bring Development Education to People Around the World

Barry Pittendrigh, professor of Entomology, and International Programs and Studies' Julia Bello Bravo developed an organization to use technology to address the growing need of education in various areas around the world. This program has recently invited several undergraduate students to join the initiative by creating a variety of educational, 3-D videos. SIB extends its sincerest congratulations to Dr. Pittendrigh for his receipt of the 2012-2013 Campus Award for Excellence in Public Engagement, which he received for this very project. Read the full details here!

Students Take Active Interest in Boneyard Creek

Becky Fuller's Ichthyology 2012 class has recently engaged the public in their efforts to improve the quality of the nearby Boneyard Creek by creating a website devoted to its history and future. Check out their class webpage here, and don't forget to check into Boneyard Day, which takes place this Friday, April 6, 2013!

Chris Cheng Recognized in AAAS Member Spotlight

Animal Biology's Chris Cheng was featured in the online publication produced by American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The article delves into Dr. Cheng's research, which focuses on the evolutionary traits of the Antarctic notothenioid, and presents her beautiful photographs on gallery page of their website. Check out the article, and don't forget to take a look through her pictures as well! Keep up the great work, Dr. Cheng!

Joanne Manaster selected to examine child survival issues in India with the International Reporting Project

The International Reporting Project (IRP) has selected ten innovative journalists and new media experts from around the world to participate in a ten-day trip to India. Joanne Manaster, Lecturer for the School of Integrative Biology, is among those selected. The new media journalists will meet with a wide range of Indians and explore issues of child survival in India. Among the topics they will examine are the development of vaccines, child malnutrition, tuberculosis, polio, HIV/AIDS, maternal health, access to clean water and hygiene, privatization of health care and its affect on child survival, and the impact of agricultural and rural development on child survival. Check out Joanne's blog posting at Scientific American! More...

Congratulations to Ryan Kelly, 2012 winner of the Deevey Award from the Ecological Society of America!

Ryan Kelly, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Plant Biology at the University of Illinois, is the winner of the 2012 Deevey award for his presentation: “Pushing the limits of the boreal-forest fire regime: recent changes in a 10,000 year context.” His presentation was coauthored by Melissa Chipman, Philip E. Higuera, Linda B. Brubaker, and Feng Sheng Hu.

His research reconstructed 10,000 years of boreal-forest fire history from analysis of macroscopic charcoal accumulation in sediment cores from Alaska. He presented evidence that the boreal fire regime has been changing through fuel depletion. Mr. Kelly completed a Bachelor of Science in Integrative Biology from the University of Illinois in 2005.


Elementary Outreach

Most people think all flowers smell beautiful.  Students at Frank Hall Elementary certainly thought so when they More...

Answers for Ants

Check out this really cool outreach being done by Andy Suarez.  Did you think all ants look the same?  Think again.

Answers for Ants:  Researchers create a new tool at the front line of pest control.

Plant Biology professors Steve Long and Don Ort are awarded $25 million from Gates!

This transformative grant will enable new research to improve the photosynthetic efficiency and production of important crop plants. Faced with an ever growing world population, increasing food production is of paramount importance. The Gates Foundation grant will involve several SIB faculty, including Andrew Leakey and Lisa Ainsworth, and will put the school and department at the forefront of international efforts to improve food security. More...

Biodiversity Extravaganza at the Orpheum Children’s Science Museum: Sunday Dec. 9th, 1-5pm

Graduate students in the School of Integrative Biology at the University of Illinois have created some awesome activities to teach children More...

Internship Opportunity

Collegiate Leaders in Environmental Health (CLEH) Internship Opportunity Announcement. More....

Six professors at Illinois named 2012 AAAS fellows

Chi-Hing Christina Cheng, a professor of animal biology, is one of six Illinois professors named AAAS fellows. More...


IB undergrad's senior thesis is published and is attracting widespread attention

An SIB undergrad's independent research project is published in a high-impact scientific journal. More...



Women In Science (WIS) needs new officers for 2013! We have positions open for both graduate students and undergraduates.

This is a great opportunity to get involved in a growing organization, network with women in other departments and improve your CV!



Women in Science: Panel Discussion on Monday, November 26th from 4-6pm in IGB 612 (next to Array Café)

Please join Women in Science as we hold our final panel discussion of the fall semester!

Topic: Using Social Media to Promote Science


Women in Science: Panel Discussion on Tuesday, Oct. 30th from 4-6pm in ACES Library Heritage Room

Please join Women in Science as we hold our first panel discussion of the fall semester!

Topic: Alternative Career Paths in the STEM Fields




Welcome Back! - Fall 2012

Thursday, September 6th, 5:00-7:00 PM

Illini Union Room C

Find out what SIB is all about and meet other IB majors!! More...



NSF Grant Workshop - 9/7/12

Greetings from the Graduate College’s Office of External Fellowships. As part of our efforts to help graduate students win grants and fellowships from external funders, we will hold a workshop on the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program on Friday, September 7, 2:00-4:00 p.m., in the Illini Union, room 314.

Former Director of the NSF-GRF program, William Hahn (Georgetown University), along with University of Illinois faculty members Mark Hasegawa-Johnson and Glaucio Paulino, will provide a comprehensive overview of the fellowship program and offer guidance on preparing effective applications. Registration is required. More...



Hugh Robertson elected a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America!

It’s a pretty big deal, so next time you see Dr Robertson be sure to congratulate him.  Hugh Robertson has been elected a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America for his contributions to the field of Entomology.

You can check out more about the award and Hugh’s remarkable career on at the Entomological Society of America’s website.

Congratulations Dr Robertson!



We're On Facebook!!

In case anyone hasn’t noticed yet, we are on facebook!

Our academic advisors have set up a page where announcements are made and questions can be asked.  Check it out for updates on what is going on with the school, particularly if you are looking for reminders of those important dates and opportunities for our students. More...



Congratulations to Dr. Bell!

Allison Bell, professor of Animal Biology, has been awarded the Animal Behavior Society Young Investigator Award for her research and laboratory contributions.

Allison’s research focuses on the study of individual behavior and “personality” as well as the driving motivators and ramifications of such characteristics.  It is this exciting research as well as her aptitude for guiding those in her lab to excel that has earned her this award.

Check out the story here!



Matt Grobis Earns a Fulbright Grant!

This is a testimonial from Matt Grobis, one of our outstanding IB Honors students who just earned a Fulbright Grant to study in Germany next year.  Take a look to learn about what he is going to be doing and how you can follow his lead. More...



Convocation Video

SIB Convocation last Saturday was a wonderful celebration!  If you would like to view the ceremony, here is a link:

Thank you to the faculty and staff for giving of your time to make the day special for our graduates and their friends and families.  A big thank you goes to Dave Stone for his words of inspiration and encouragement.  This is one of the most rewarding events of the year.  Thank you, thank you, thank you for your help in making it a really fun day!



Spring Convocation Saturday!

Saturday, May 12, 2012, 10:00 AM
Tryon Festival Theatre, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 South Goodwin Avenue, Urbana

The School of Integrative Biology Convocation Ceremony is for graduating seniors, Master’s and doctoral candidates in curricula under the auspices of the School of Integrative Biology. A reception will immediately follow the Ceremony in the KCPA lobby. This Ceremony is in addition to the campuswide Commencement Ceremony in the Assembly Hall.  Doctoral candidates may be hooded at either or both ceremonies. More...



Outstanding Volunteer Service Award

Grant Hansen, graduate student in the new Plant Biology Professional Science Master’s program, has been awarded a 2012 Outstanding Volunteer Service Award, through the Office of Volunteer Programs, University of Illinois. Grant was recognized for his dedication to market research and business consulting partnerships with small businesses, which he conducts through ECI-SCORE, a CU student volunteer business organization. He was nominated for this honor by his SCORE mentor, Dr. Mel DeGeeter, who also attended the awards ceremony (inset).

Congratulations Grant!



Congratulations Dr. Ainsworth and Dr. Long!

Congratulations to plant biology’s Lisa Ainsworth, winner of the Shull Award, and Steve Long, winner of the Kettering Award! More...



World of Biology Photo Competition Winners

The 1st Annual World of Biology Photo Competition was a fantastic success!  Of the many entries, nine winning entries were chosen from three categories.

Check out the winning entries and start planning for next year!



Women in Science Panel Discussion on Tuesday, April 24th from 4-6 p.m. in Music Room, Levis Center

Please join Women in Science as we hold our second panel discussion!

Topic: Women Don’t Ask: How to become an effective negotiator




SIB Junior wins Research Fellowship

Congratulations to Stephanie Klein, a junior majoring in Integrative Biology, who has been awarded a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) by the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB). Stephanie is one of fifteen students selected in the highly competitive national competition in 2012. She will receive a stipend and research funds to study “Auxin control of Medicago truncatula root development under elevated CO2″ over the summer with Dr. Andrew Leakey, as well as support to travel to Providence, RI to present her findings at the annual meeting of ASPB next year.



SIB Spring Picnic

Posted on behalf of Jo-anne Holley,

Spring is here and it’s time for the annual SIB picnic! All staff, faculty,post-docs and graduate students are welcome. We will again be at Pavillion at Hessel park on the afternoon Sunday April 22nd. More...



Jeff Miguel Visits the Galapagos

Many of our Integrative Biology students choose to study abroad and conduct research in the field. Jeff Miguel, pictured to the right, spent the fall of 2010 in Ecuador and the Galapagos islands studying Marine Ecology by enrolling in the Galapagos program (GAIAS) at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito. More...



Illinois Science Olympiad Tounament needs volunteers

Volunteers needed! The Illinois Science Olympiad Tournament will be held on campus on April 14. High school and middle school students will compete in 46 events in the disciplines of biology, earth science, chemistry, physics and technology. No experience needed to volunteer. Contact Bob Coverdill at for more information.




Conservatory Spring Open House

This weekend is our Spring Open House. Come out and enjoy this beautiful Spring weather here at the conservatory. The conservatory will be dressed with some spring blooming shrubs and flowers. This weekend we will have an orchid plant sale for a fund raiser for the conservatory. The Central Illinois Orchid Society will be here to answer any questions you may have about orchids. In addition to the show and sale, on Sat., one of the members of the Orchid Society will do a workshop on ‘How to repot your orchid’. It will be at 1:00 on Sat., March 10th in room 1103. Also, the Orchid Society is offering to repot your orchid for a small fee of $5.00 if you bring your own pot or you can purchase a pot from the Orchid Society for a minimum charge. More...



SIB major, Muhammed Fazeel, is one of five finalists five finalists for the Lemelson-MIT $30,000 Illinois Student Prize for innovation

--Muhammed is working on an innovation called “In Case of Emergency” or I.C.E. This is a device that can call emergency services in case of major cardiac events that is affordable and non-invasive. He is also working on another project called Tabule, an instructor-student communication tool that is simple, efficient and ready to use on any smartphone or laptop. Tabule is currently in its beta-testing phase. Visit Muhammed's website for more information:!

The winner of the prize will be announced and awarded the prize at a ceremony scheduled for 6:00 p.m. on March 7, 2012 in the auditorium of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA; 1205 W. Clark, Urbana), on the University of Illinois campus. The awards ceremony is open to the public, and will be immediately followed by a reception for all attendees. We’re rooting for you, Muhammed!



Ainsworth named University Scholar

--Lisa Ainsworth, Associate Professor of Plant Biology, has been recognized as a University Scholar. This award, received by nomination by the campus, represents recognition of the recipient’s excellence and the University’s commitment to foster outstanding people and their work. Dr. Ainsworth will receive an allocated monetary award annually for three years in order to further her academic development and research interests. Congratulations, Dr. Ainsworth!



2011 News

2010 News


Past Newsletters (pdf)

Summer 2012
Summer 2008
Winter 2006
Winter 2005
Summer 2003
Spring 2002