Drashty Mody is examining saltwater intrusion in wetlands — and the James River’s water quality — as an undergraduate researcher. (Photo illustration by University Relations)

Drashty Mody, a biology major set to graduate in May, is on the pre-dentistry track at VCU. She was placed last year in the research lab of Rima Franklin, Ph.D., associate professor of microbial ecology in the College of Humanities and Sciences. At first she was nervous that Franklin’s ecological research seemed like no more than a distant cousin to Mody’s passion for dentistry. But soon Mody realized from her experience that there is a closer connection between the two fields. “Whether it is studying microbes in the freshwater wetlands or the oral cavity, both communities are affected by significant changes in their environment,” Mody said. “To be able to study the community succession and adaptation to new settings is very similar in the two seemingly distant fields of study. To be able to draw those parallels between two subjects has been the most fascinating and adventurous aspect of my research.”

Read the full article, “An aspiring dentist discovers a passion for ecology” by Tom Greshman at VCU News.

Categories Ecological Processes and Applications, Research, Students
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