Recommendation Letters

Letters of Recommendation
I love helping students be successful in their ventures beyond Vassar, and so am happy to write letters of recommendation for students. For me to write letters for you, it is critical that I can write a detailed, personal, and specific letter about your academic/research experience with me. If your interaction with me has been limited or lacked real engagement, then I will not be able to write a strong letter. And a weak letter can be damaging to your applications. So when thinking about possible letter writers, think carefully about which professors have gotten to know you as a person and as an active and engaged student.
If you do wish to ask me to write and submit letters of recommendation, please follow this process:
  1. Reach out to me by email to set up time to meet and talk about the programs you are applying to.  Please do this at least 3 weeks before any letters are due.
  2. After we meet to discuss the programs, please submit the following information to this Google Form at least two weeks before any letters are due:
    (a) spreadsheet or table showing details for each program that  you will apply to (if more than one)
    (b) example personal statement from your application(s) that clearly explains why you are applying to the program(s) and why you are a highly qualified candidate.
    (c) your Resume/CV
    (d) a list of your academic experiences with Prof. Schwarz
    (e) explanations of your academic experiences with Prof. Schwarz
  3. If the deadline is approaching within the next day or two and you have not received notification that the letter has been submitted, please send me an email reminder two days before the deadline for each letter, and remind me which program this is for and which website/link to use to submit the letter.


Former Research Students

Name Year Major Project Title Post-Vassar
Stephen Evans 2008 BIO URSI and Thesis Physiological effects of copper-based antifouling paint on the Aiptasia symbiosis
Lisl Esherick 2008 BIO Thesis Expression patterns of stress-response genes under different environmental stressors PhD, Stanford Department of Genetics
Annika O’Dea 2008 BIO URSI and Thesis Microarray analysis of gene expression patterns of corals exposed to heavy metal / Effect of thermal stress on symbiosis MS, Coastal and Ocean Engineering Oregon State University, Fulbright Fellow
Nooreen Rubin 2009 BIO URSI and Thesis Spatial effects of symbionts on gastrodermal cells of A. pallida
Nick Hebert 2009 BIO Thesis Characterizing expression levels of sym32 in the tropical sea anemone Aiptasia pallida
Felix Steiny 2009 CMPU URSI AiptasiaWiki: a community genomics resource
Mickey Thaler 2009 CMPU URSI AiptasiaBase: a transcriptome resource
Annamarie Pasqualone 2010 ENST Thesis Effect of microbial community on bleaching resistance in symbiotic cnidarians PhD, University of Delaware
Sam Seymour 2011 BIO Thesis Response of corals to heavy metal pollution: involvement of the ETS transcription factor?
Joe Carver 2011 BIO URSI Acute toxic responses of symbiotic sea anemones to crude and dispersed oil MS, National Institutes of Health
Peter Grauman 2011 BIO URSI Differential protein expression in Aiptasia pallida during heat stress PhD, University Massachusetts Amherst, Computer Science
Danielle Twum 2012 BIO URSI and Thesis Corals need their vitamins too: Effect of antioxidants on coral bleaching PhD, Roswell Cancer Institute, Department of Immunology
Eadaoin Harney 2012 BIOCH URSI and Thesis The symbiosis transcriptome and cellular changes associated with symbiosis PhD, Harvard University, Organismic and Evolutionary Biology Program
Joey Azofeifa 2012 BIO Thesis Bioinformatic and Evolutionary analysis of the Leucine-rich Repeat G-Protein Coupled Receptor Gene family in metazoans PhD, University of Colorado Boulder, Computer Science
Ian Heller 2012 BIO Thesis Bioinformatic identification of gametogenesis-specific genes in cnidarians PhD, Stanford University, Department of Integrative Biology
Josh Klein 2012 CMPU URSI and Thesis Developing AiptasiaBase: a public DNA sequence repository and annotation resource PhD, Boston University, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
Ben Chipkin 2013 STS URSI Role of NPC2 in symbiosis
Alvin Chang 2013 Bio URSI Strain-specific differences in Symbiodinium lipids
Ishaira Nieto-Rosas 2014 Bio URSI/Thesis NPC2 in symbiotic anemones
Ann Nguyen 2015 Bio Thesis NPC2 Expression
Jordan Brooker 2015 Bio/CMPU Thesis Nonsynonymous SNPs in Rana sylvatica
Gabby Scher

Margaret Walter

2015 Bio Thesis Expression of LGR genes in anemones
Lena Josephs 2016 Bio URSI/Thesis Genetic control of coral spawning: verification of differentially expressed genes using real time PCR
Daria Egorova 2017 Bio Thesis Strain-specific differences in resilience to bleaching

Coral Symbiosis and Genomics