University of Florida Homepage

Friday Scrapbook May 10, 2019

Hi All,

After a “Let’s just get through finals week and the end of the semester” break, the scrapbook is back with a special Awards and Warm Fuzzies Edition:

Dr. Kim Valenta Joins the Anthropology Department

I am pleased to welcome Dr. Kim Valenta, who will join us in August.  Dr. Valenta comes to us from Duke University. She earned her Ph.D. from Stanford University. Her research program examines the interactions between wild plants and primates (monkeys and lemurs) and how these are affected by human activities. She combines field observations of animal foraging behavior in the tropics with diverse analytical techniques – including chemistry and spectroscopy – to quantify plant attractants and deterrents. Dr. Valenta is also the co-founder and co-director of the Mad Dog Initiative (, an applied conservation non-profit organization in Madagascar.


Please join me in congratulating our most recent students to earn the Doctorate in Anthropology: Lesley-Gail Atkinson, Jelena Brezjanovic-Shogren, Kia Fuller, Nathan Lawres, and Katie Rubin were awarded their Ph.D. degrees last Friday.  Please join me in appealing their hard work and perseverance.

On Sunday morning we recognized several students who earned their M.A. this spring: Amanda Brock, Catrina Cuadra, Raphaela Meloro, and Michael Stoop were awarded their degrees.  Happily for them, the M.A. degrees were recognized first thing Sunday morning at the (now infamous) College Recognition Ceremony, so our students (mostly) avoided getting rained on.  Congratulations to all four!

Graduate School Doctoral Research Travel Award Winners

Arianne Boileau and Nicolas Del Sol recently were named Summer 2019 Graduate School Doctoral Research Travel Award winners. Congratulations to both!

Lambda Alpha Winners

Rebecca Henderson and Sarah Zaleski both were awarded Lambda Alpha Research Grants.  Lambda Alpha is the National Anthropology Honor Society.  Congratulations to both!

Anthropology Students in the News

We’ve had several of our students profiled in University Publications recently.  Andreana Cunningham and Chris Clukay were profiled for their research, which has been supported by NSF Graduate Research Fellowships.  You can find the link to Andre and Chris’ research here.

Cady Gonzalez, Megan Cogburn, and Netty Carey were profiled by the CLAS media office for their research, which is supported by Fulbright-Hayes Fellowships.  You can find the story here.

The Main Office has Moved for the Summer

As a final note, the Main Office has moved for the Summer — we are down in the basement of Turlington.  You’ll find us in B328 and B329.  The first floor of Turlington is enduring HVAC renovations, necessitating our retreat to the underground.  Please note that the first floor will be off limits through the summer.  If you’re planning on scheduling a meeting or defense, contact Pam Freeman, and she will help make arrangements.

Update on Karen Jones

Many of you are aware that our office manager extraordinaire, Karen Jones, is out on leave.  She is doing well, but she will be out of the office for the immediate future.  In the meantime, if you have business issues normally handled by Karen, or you contacted Karen after April 1 and haven’t heard back from her (or us), please direct your inquiry to Pam Freeman and we will assist you.


Safe Travels this Summer, and I look forward to seeing you in August.

Pete Collings

Jessie Ball duPont-Magid Term Professor

Interim Chair

Department of Anthropology

University of Florida