Our Team

Our lab functions because of the hard work of student interns who work throughout each summer and often during the academic year as well.   If you’re interested in learning more about working on tickborne disease prevention projects at WCSU, click here.


Our Research Team 



Rayda Krell, Ph.D.  –  BITM Study Coordinator

Dr. Krell joined the tick lab in October 2016 as study coordinator for our new CDC-funded integrated tick management study.  She holds a PhD in entomology from Iowa State University and comes to WCSU with years of pest management experience. We are so lucky to have her as part of our research team.  Learn more about the study by clicking here.





Karen Thompson  – Laboratory Manager

Karen has been working in the lab since 2011.  She began as a student intern (WCSU Secondary Ed Biology ’12), and now still oversees lab operations part-time, while also balancing a busy career as a biology teacher at Staples High School and pursuing a master’s degree!  Karen always keeps our work on track.   She can be reached at thompsonk@wcsu.edu.




2017 Student Interns


Brittany Schappach (WCSU Biology ’18)






Sandra Zapata Ramirez (WCSU Biology ’18)








Kiran Singh-Smith (Barnard College, Environmental Sciences, ’19)



Past Tick Lab Students:  Barbara Campbell (Sociology), Vanele Dacosta (Biology), Melissa Dease (Biology), Melissa DiNino (Biology), Carina Doyle (NYU Biology), Payal Dudhedia (Biology), Karina Escobar (Biology), AmberJean Hansen (Biology), Socheata Lim (Biochemistry), Jake Lipinski (Biology), Kim Lockwood (Biology), Christopher Madden (Biology), Megan Morrow (Biology), Devin Norkowski (Psychology), Colin O’Brien (Biology), Bruna Oliveira (Biology), Dimitri Psaltos (Boston Univ. Biomedical Engineering), Jennifer Reid (Health Promotion), Chantal Ridlon (Biology), Esau Rojas (Biology), Amanda Thompson (UNH Biology), Robert Toth III (Biology), Layra Valdez (Biochemistry), Rebecca Warren (Biology).

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