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About me


  • Stanford University - Palo Alto, CA
    Ph.D. student in Department of Biology with Elizabeth Hadly
  • Harvard College - Cambridge, MA
    A.B. in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, cum laude with high honors in field, May 2011
  • Winter Springs High School – Winter Springs, FL
    Graduated as the valedictorian in a graduating class of 579 in May 2007

Selected research awards

  • Selected workshop participant, “Evolutionary genomics of non-model organisms”, American Genetics Association, June 2011
  • Thomas Temple Hoopes Prize for Outstanding Thesis, Harvard University, May 2011
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow (predoctoral fellowship), 2011-2014
  • Stanford Graduate Fellowship in Science and Engineering, award beginning in September 2011
  • Undergraduate Diversity recipient, Society for the Study of Evolution (SSE) and the Society for Systematic Biologists (SSB), Evolution 2010 conference, June 2010
  • Dean’s Summer Research Award, Harvard College, Summer 2010
  • Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology and Harvard Herbaria Grant-in-aid of Undergraduate Research, Myvanwy M. and George M. Dick Scholarship Fund for Science Students, April 2010
  • Harvard David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Summer Travel Grant, March 2010
  • Summer Intern, Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences Center for Systems Biology, 2009
  • Fellow, Harvard Program for Research in Science and Engineering (PRISE), Summer 2009
  • Grant Recipient, Harvard College Research Program, Fall 2009 and Summer 2010

Selected presentations and conferences

  • Poster presentation, “Molecular population genetics of monarch butterflies: insights into the genetics of migration behavior”, American Genetics Association, Guanajuato, Mexico, July 2011
  • The 6th International Conference on the Biology of Butterflies, Edmonton, Canada, July 2010
    • Contributed talk: NL Chamberlain*, JL Hsu, and MR Kronforst. A potential role for phosphoglucose isomerase (PGI) in monarch migration.
    • Presented poster: JL Hsu*, NL Chamberlain, and MR Kronforst. Examining the genetic basis of migratory behavior in Monarch butterflies.
  • Poster presentation, Evolution 2010 (Society for the Study of Evolution, Society of Systematic Biologists, and the American Society of Naturalists), Portland, Oregon, June 2010
  • Poster Presentation, Harvard Undergraduate Research Symposium, November 2009

Teaching experience

  • Co-director, Stanford Biocore Explorations, fall 2012 to present - the Explorations program allows graduate students and post-docs to develop and teach one-time, hands-on courses to undergrads. The program both allows grad students and post-docs a unique teaching oppportunity, and also gives undergraduates a chance to experience scientific topics and research that is important and relevant but would normally not be covered, or not covered in much depth, in the introductory biology courses.
  • Program assistant, Stanford Summer Research Program, summer 2012 - served as a scientific mentor for undergraduates conducting research at Stanford, leading a weekly course that focused on scientific development, communication and presentation skills, and graduate school applications
  • Teaching assistant for Biology 43 (Biocore: Plant Biology, Evolution, and Ecology), spring 2012, under Professors Mary Beth Mudgett, Hunter Fraser, and Peter Vitousek - taught two sections, held office hours, graded exams, etc.
  • Teaching assistant for Biology 143/243 (Evolution), Stanford University, fall 2011, under Professor Ward Watt – taught section of 15 students, graded problem sets and exams, held office hours
  • Developed and taught course, titled “SchLEPing around: case studies in butterfly ecology and evolution” (seminar and field trip); part of Biology 41 (Biocore) Explorations, fall 2011
  • Developed and taught courses ("The Evolution of Evolution" and "SchLEPing around" again) for Stanford Splash, spring 2012.

Activities, random awards, and fun stuff!

I've played the cello for over 15 years, and have played in orchestra for nearly all of those years! I started out with the Florida Symphony Youth Orchestra, before playing with the Harvard Bach Society Orchestra. I am currently a member of the Stanford Symphony Orchestra, and became president of the organization in fall 2012.

I've also enjoyed tutoring and outreach. I served as director of Harvard CHANCE for nearly three years; CHANCE is a volunteer group that provides SAT tutoring, homework help, and college advice to high school students. In addition, I was on the board of the Harvard Undergraduate Biological Sciences Society while an undergrad.

Finally, I love playing basketball (even though I'm short!), and also am a huge fan of the Orlando Magic! I've also served as coach for the Winter Springs Basketball League summer camps for two summers.

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