The Pest Management Foundation Scholarship Program announced the five recipients of its 2022-2023 student scholarships.
These scholarships were awarded to five students at accredited entomology programs at U.S. colleges or universities in the amount of $2,000 each.
This year’s recipients are:
- Christopher Hayes, North Carolina State University
- Jin-Jia Yu, Rutgers University
- Madison Gits, University of Florida
- Simona Principato, University of Kentucky
- Jun-Yin Lum, University of California – Riverside
To be eligible for scholarship consideration, applicants needed to be currently enrolled undergraduate (junior or senior year) or graduate students majoring in entomology and focused on urban pest management. They also had to have completed at least two semesters of study with at least one year remaining before graduation. Applicants also had to be full-time students in good academic standing (3.0 GPA or better on 4.0 scale). Only one scholarship is awarded per college or university each year.
Christopher Hayes is Ph.D. candidate at North Carolina State University (NCSU) in the field of urban entomology and is investigating how malaria control tools may drive the evolution of pyrethroid resistance in bed bugs. He is interested in how long-lasting insecticide treated nets (LLINs), as well as commonly used repellent products affect bed bug host-seeking behavior. Hayes regularly co-teaches workshops on a variety of pests to pest management professionals (PMPs) from around North Carolina and the surrounding states in association with the NCSU Structural Pest Management Training & Research Facility. Outside the university, he has taught over 1,500 members of the community about the importance of urban pest management, served as a National Pest Management Association (NPMA) intern and is a member of the Pi Chi Omega fraternity.
Jin-Jia Yu is a second year Ph.D. student in the department of entomology at Rutgers University – New Brunswick. He obtained bachelor’s and master’s degrees in entomology from National Chung Hsing University, Taiwan in 2017 and 2020, respectively. He works with Dr. Changlu Wang in urban entomology. His research focuses on insecticide resistance of bed bugs and ectoparasites carried by house mice. Currently, he is studying the mechanisms causing high pyrethroid resistance in field-collected bed bugs. He published three peer-reviewed journal articles from his previous and current research. His career goal is to work as a scientist developing new solutions to urban pest management.
Madison Gits is from La Porte, Ind. She received her bachelor’s degrees in animal behavior and biology from Indiana University and her master’s degree in entomology from Purdue University. She is currently an entomology Ph.D. student at the University of Florida co-advised by Dr. Michael Scharf and Dr. Faith Oi. She is interested in studying insecticide resistance in German cockroaches and how to transfer knowledge to stakeholders.
Simona Principato is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Kentucky. She is currently working with bed bugs in the urban entomology lab with Dr. DeVries. She completed her bachelor of science in biotechnology at the Universita’ degli Studi di Perugia (Italy) and her master of science in entomology at Harper Adams University (United Kingdom). Her work focuses on understanding the distribution of histamine excreted in the feces of common urban pests and the possible health relevance of bed bug- derived histamine, mitigation strategies and bed bug control. As she continues with her studies, she strives to acquire a wide knowledge, research expertise, laboratory techniques and skills to support the pest management industry in efficiently tackling the continuous challenges of urban pests.
Jun-Yin Lum is currently attending the University of California – Riverside. His research focuses on using a combination of toxicology and population genetics on the German cockroach, to understand how insecticide resistance can be inherited in these insects. His goal is to develop better methods of control, especially in insecticide-resistant populations.