Amanda J Gorton


  • Time Zone

  • Organization
    University of Minnesota

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

  • Research Interests (300 words)
    I use plants (specifically common ragweed) to ask ecological and evolutionary questions about adaptation to cities to and to different climates. I use a combination of field experiments, greenhouse experiments, and genetic tools.

  • Profile Question 1
    When and why did you decide to go into a science career?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 1 here (300 words):
    When I was in high school, I had a biology teacher with a degree in ecology. She studied how mangroves trees disperse their seeds via water in the tropics, and I thought it was so cool! Hearing about her research and field experience made me want to become a scientist so I could do my own exploring

  • Profile Question 2
    Do you have advice for students about preparing for a science career?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 2 here (300 words):
    Volunteer and try out as many activities as you can! Science is many things: it is collecting samples, designing and conducting experiments, collecting data, analyzing data, reading papers, presenting your research with colleagues and the public, teaching science, and many more! Even within those tasks, there are a lot of different activities. For example, you could conduct all of your experiments in a lab environment, or you could conduct all of them outside! You might find you might like one more than the other , or you might find something totally different you enjoy. I would recommend trying out as many scientific tasks as you can - it will help you figure out what you like, and even more importantly, what you don't like!

  • Profile Question 3
    What is the coolest thing you have discovered or learned about plants?

  • Answer the question you selected for profile question 3 here (300 words):
    Plants can be parasites! Some plants are able to penetrate the roots of other plants, and gain all their water and nutrients from that other plant. Look up the Corpse Flower, (Rafflesia arnoldii) for a picture of a cool parasitic plant.

  • Availability
    I am NOT available, please temporarily remove me from the available mentor list

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

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