Ms. Kirsten Thoede graduated from Texas A&M University in 2013 with a B.S. degree in zoology. As an undergraduate, she received a research internship to participate in a biodiversity study of birds native to the South African arid zone. For this project, she extracted DNA and ran PCR’s for hundreds of tissue and blood samples. She also participated in two separate field projects. One was a research study on the hybridization of the Black-crested and Tufted Titmouse in central Texas. The other was a survey of an endangered population of Saltmarsh Sparrows in Long Island, New York. For both projects, she assisted with point-count, call-back and mist-net surveys. Ms. Thoede’s goal is to become an environmental consultant. Her primary interests are in biodiversity, surface water quality, wetland health, pollution mitigation, endangered species surveys, habitat restoration, and environmental sustainability. To gain more experience in these areas, she enrolled in the Environmental Analysis graduate program at Rice University.