Kate's interest in pollination began from the desire to unwind the complexity of both direct and indirect ecosystem interactions. She studied pollination ecology in William’s lab at UC Davis before graduating with her Bachelor’s degree in 2018.
In Toth Lab, Kate has been studying the influence of environments on plant-insect interactions, ecosystem functions, and foraging behavior. With regards to the STRIPS project (Science-based Trials of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips), she has discovered how small patches of native prairie in corn and soybean fields increase ecosystem functions and the extent these newly gained function are resilient to exotic honey bee apiary presence. She has also expanded wasp research, investigating plant-wasp interactions, body pollen carriage, and pollination ability through multiple small studies.
As Kate adds the final touches to her dissertation, she is hoping to continue her research and eventually become a professor one day. She hopes to give young scientists opportunities to get involved in research, like the one she had as a freshman Biology major.