Kirsten Isabel Verster


  • Time Zone

  • Organization

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

  • Research Interests (300 words)
    Evolution, genetics, coevolution

  • Profile Question 1
    Can you share a funny/interesting lab or field story?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 1 here (300 words):
    I remember I was in Michigan, where I was catching wasps from all over a field station to study how they learn and interact with one another… needless to say, I was not finding as many wasps as I wanted, and I was getting a bit desperate. I saw a giant wasp nest at least two stories high up… it seemed impossible! But a man passed by with a huge ladder and he actually held it stable for me as I climbed the wobbly ladder up two stories, waving my net around trying to catch the wasps that were angrily trying to sting me! Anything in the name of science :)

  • Profile Question 2
    What is the coolest thing you have discovered or learned about plants?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 2 here (300 words):
    I was never really into botany until I watched David Attenborough’s film, The Private Life of Plants. I realized plants aren’t static, immobile beings… they compete and grow and strive to survive, just like animals, but on a totally different time scale! Watching the time lapses and erratic, bizarre movements in Attenborough’s film helped sow the seeds of my interest in plants.

  • Profile Question 3
    What is best about being a scientist?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 3 here (300 words):
    The best thing about being a scientist is you get to follow your own independent interests, pursue your curiosity about the natural world in ways I truly believe no other discipline does. Of course, you need to gather knowledge about a system before you can figure out what questions to ask, but cultivating that knowledge and discovering the answers on your own is what makes our discipline so rewarding!

  • 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?

Skills & Endorsements

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