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Guillermo E Silva

Profile

  • Time Zone
    Pacific

  • Organization
    Chicago Botanic Garden/ Bureau of Land Management

  • Role
    Scientist Mentor: I will mentor teams of students online

  • Research Interests (300 words)
    Currently I am a botanist for the Chicago Botanic Garden and Bureau of Land Management. My job is to collect thousands of seeds from native plants to aid in restoration efforts. My interests include seed development and germination, plant physiology, and conservation planning.

  • Profile Question 1
    What is your favorite plant? Why?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 1 here (300 words):
    This is a tough one. I don't have a favorite plant, but I do have a favorite plant family. Lamiaceae, the mint family, is my favorite because finding a member of this family is so easy and often pleasant. I love rolling their square stems between my fingers and often I'll make tea or flavor lemonade with their leaves. I love the scent they leave on your fingers and I think their flowers, especially beebalms, are some of the prettiest in the plant world.

  • Profile Question 2
    When and why did you decide to go into a science career?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 2 here (300 words):
    Growing up on the border between Mexico and the US, I often caught and released horned lizards and anoles. Over the years I noticed less and less horned lizards until one day when I was in High School I realized I hadn't seen one in years. This shook me deeply. I decided I wanted to do conservation work there and then, and initially I thought I was going to study herpetology (reptiles and amphibians). In college, I took a field course in plant taxonomy and I realized all these years I had what we called in the course "plant blindness". After learning the name of almost every single plant around my campus I came to the conclusion that we wouldn't have a clue if we lost certain species unless we rid ourselves of this blindness and realized they existed with us. This inspired me to teach and point out to my friends and family all the plants we came across, big and small, to force their consciousness to acknowledge the existence of what was previously just a green carpet to us.

  • Profile Question 3
    (not set)

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 3 here (300 words):
    (not set)

  • Help represent the outreach efforts of your societies. Please click all those organizations you are a member of:
    (not set)

  • Availability
    I am currently available for mentoring, please send me team match invitations

  • Capacity: How many teams at a time are you comfortable working with?
    2

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