Kelley Withers

Graduate Assistant ISA and Latham
Biography

Kelley Withers grew up in a rural town in Indiana (pop. 1,049) and was inundated with the wonders of life science by her parents, both of whom studied biology and chemistry. Following in her brother’s footsteps (because she thought he was cool), after Kelley graduated high school, she attended Purdue University and earned a B.S. in Biochemistry. During her undergraduate career, Kelley completed her undergraduate thesis work describing the mechanism of arsenic detoxification in ferns used for remediating soil. She was selected for an NSF-funded internship at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri where she studied the process of viral infection of cassava, an important staple crop worldwide. After graduating, Kelley immediately jumped into graduate studies at the University of Iowa. Currently, Kelley is a Ph.D. candidate in Dr. Chi-Lien Cheng’s laboratory, where she characterizes the function of cell-signaling genes in coordinating fern development. In her free time, Kelley enjoys making watercolor art of plants, reading fiction, and tasting every flavor of cupcake at Scratch Cupcakery.

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BS Biochemistry, Purdue University