Alumni & Friends - Ways to get involved and give back

Seminar Series

Please note that seminars generally take place on Fridays at 12:00 p.m. during the Fall & Winter terms




January 22 Dr. A. Ashok

Dr. Marc Cadotte

Dr. Tod Thiele 

Dr. Yan Wang

"Our external engagement as scientists: what are the obligations, how should we do it and with who?"

For those of you who could not attend today’s session or if you wish to re-visit the discussion, please see the link below:

Access Passcode: 8YX*JmERgx

January 29 Dr. Fillion


"Inside a spontaneous SARS-CoV-2 facility".


In April 2020, when the COVID-19 epidemic overwhelmed the Catalan health system, I took part in a spontaneous project for testing the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in the population. In this zoominar I will present the challenges that we met and what we learned about fast response to epidemics.


The online discussion will take place on Friday January 29 at 12.00 pm. You can access it at the following Zoom link:

February 5

Dr. Liang Song


How do plants make time machines? A story of transcription factors in seed maturation.


Seeds are the time machines made by plants for their offsprings to travel through space and time, and germinate in a favored environment. Seeds development involves embryogenesis, storage reserve accumulation, desiccation tolerance, and induction of dormancy. These processes are coordinated by many transcription factors under complex spatial and temporal regulation. Using genetic and genomic approaches, her team showed how transcription factor networks shape the transition from seeds to seedlings.


The zoominar will take place on Friday February 5 at 12.00 pm. You can access it at the following Zoom link:

February 12

Dr. Tadashi Fukami

Stanford University

Nectar microbes and the historical contingency that challenges community ecology.

Tadashi will talk about his group's recent and ongoing research on microbial communities that develop in floral nectar. His focus is to understand when history affects ecological community assembly. 

You can access it at the following Zoom link:

Passcode: 16d^5sJ8rP 


February 19 Dr. Fracoise Cardou

Functional traits in practice: novel tools for environmental management in highly impacted systems.

Francoise Cardou is a post doctoral fellow in the team of Marc Cadotte at UTSC.

With increasing focus on urban sustainability, new tools are needed to manage urban woodlands for resilience and ecosystem service provision. Functional traits can provide quantitative and testable links between urban plant communities and specific ecosystem functions. In her talk, Francoise will explore how we can leverage the information provided by functional traits to provide a measure of ecological integrity, a normative conservation criteria routinely used by managers to inform management in urban systems.

You can access it at the following Zoom link:

Passcode: Nm@9uyX6dK 


The next zoominar will be a panel discussion with undergraduate students on the topic Online biology education: what works?


This is a rare opportunity for faculty and TAs to hear the perspective of undergraduate students on how online education should be done. The seminar is intended for everyone, especially for those interested in knowing more about the opinions and points of view of undergraduate students in the current circumstances.


The zoominar will take place on Friday February 26 at 12.00 pm. You can access it at the following Zoom link:

March 26 Dr. Colin Carlson

Georgetown University

Global change and the next pandemic, or, how we survive the century .


Climate change is rapidly transforming the global health landscape, in ways that are only predictable through the application of ecological theory. In this talk, Colin will discuss the process of impact assessment, and how ecologists can help identify the emerging health threats that humans and wildlife will face in the coming decades. He will start by exploring how simple models of mosquito biology can become future predictions for dengue fever, and discuss options available for mitigation (cutting back climate change) and adaptation (learning to live in a world with more vector-borne disease). He will then broaden out to wildlife health, and discuss how species range shifts could create hundreds or thousands of new threats to human health, and whether anything can be done to stop the rapid acceleration of emerging zoonotic diseases. He will conclude with a discussion of where ecologists – and scientists in general – can drive the most actionable research, and help advocate for effective policies that protect human and wildlife health from known and emerging threats


The zoominar will take place Friday March 26 at 12.00 pm. You can access it at from the link below:

April 9 Dr. Heidi Lempradi


Intergenerational nutritional reprogramming.

She identified a novel mediator of paternal intergenerational epigenetic inheritance. She will explain how piRNA-pathway controlled sperm small RNAs are linked to target gene repression in offspring and how piRNA-pathway dosage is necessary for the intergenerational metabolic and transcriptional reprogramming events triggered by high paternal dietary sugar.

The zoominar will take place Friday April 9 at 12.00 pm. You can access it at the following Zoom link: 

Passcode: !37&t2U1^?