California Botanical Society

Graduate Student Meetings

Graduate students organized the first graduate student meeting in 1973 for the purpose of encouraging graduate students in botany from throughout the state to get together and discuss their current research interest and ideas. Since then, the California Botanical Society has supported this event, holding a Graduate Student Meeting every other year in conjunction with our annual banquet. These meetings are an excellent way for students to become familiar with current botanical research and to network with a diverse community of scientists.

thumbnail_IMG_7099 Emily Cox

IMG_0766 Postbac Alissa Wilson (left) and undergraduates Vivian Avila (middle) and Elias Acosta-Mendoza



Our thanks to the following sponsors of student banquet tickets:

Ray Collett Trust
Dena Grossenbacher
Brett Hall
Nishi Rajakaruna
Rhonda Riggins
Hugh Safford
Justen Whittall

thumbnail_IMG_7154 Address by Dean Wendt, Dean of the College of Science and Mathematics,
Cal Poly                       Photo: Jenn Yost

thumbnail_IMG_7172 Address by Susan Mazer, CalBotSoc President, at the 2019 annual banquet
Photo: Jenn Yost

thumbnail_IMG_7167 Photo: Jenn Yost

IMG-2394 Photo: Margriet Wetherwax

IMG-2396 Photo: Margriet Wetherwax

IMG-2397 Photo: Margriet Wetherwax

IMG-2403 Matt Ritter leads botanical tour through Poly Canyon
Photo: Margriet Wetherwax

27th Graduate Student Symposium
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
Saturday, April 6, 2019

Prize Winners

Natalie Love, University of California, Santa Barbara: A new quantitative phenological metric for use in pheno-climatic models: a case study using herbarium specimens of Streptanthus tortuous (Best Overall Presentation)

Emily Cox, University of California, Berkeley: Lasthenia gracilis and water stress: A glimpse into the future of California grasslands (Best Talk)

Ryan Buck, San Diego State University: Interspecific Hybridization in Pinyon Pines (Honorable Mention Talk)

Andy Siekkinen, Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden / Claremont Graduate University: Systematics of Hechtia (Hechtioideae): Insights in phylogenetics and plastome evolution in a non-model organism with Next Generation Sequencing (Honorable Mention Talk)

Dena Paolilli, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo: Assessing alpine vegetation community shifts in the Sierra Nevada of California (Honorable Mention Talk)

Erin Coltharp & Chloe Knowd, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo: Oak (Quercus agrifolia) leaf domatia-mite mutualism (Joint Winner Best Poster)

Nancy Conejo, San Francisco State University: Biogeography of the whorled wattles (Acacia section Lycopodiifoliae) in the Australian Monsoon Tropics (Joint Winner Best Poster)

Drew Gilberti, California State University, Chico: Natural history of Disholcaspis eldoradensis, a galling wasp of Valley Oak (Quercus lobata): distribution, nectar, and interactions with ants (Honorable Mention Poster)

Vivian Avila & Elias Acosta-Mendoza, Santa Clara University: Reintroducing a Self-Incompatible Endangered Species - An Experimental Approach (Honorable Mention Poster)

Detailed Schedule

27th Graduate Student Symposium
Fisher Science Building, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo

7:30-8:30 AM -- Registration, poster set up, coffee and snacks
8:30-8:45 AM -- Opening Remarks Room 33-286
8:45-10 AM -- Morning Talks
10-11:30 AM -- Poster Session
11:30-12:30 PM -- Midday Talks
12:30-1:30 PM -- Lunch, in the Fisher Science Building Lobby
1:30-2:30 PM -- Afternoon Talks
2:30-4:30 PM -- Botanical Tour through Poly Canyon with Matt Ritter
4:30-5 PM -- Awards and Closing Remarks Room 33-286

California Botanical Society Annual Meeting and Banquet
Performing Arts Center Pavilion

5-6 pm Botany Mixer (No-host Bar)
6-7:45 pm Annual banquet with keynote speaker David Lowry

Detailed Program

Complete Program Book

Ticket Prices

$25 - Graduate Student Symposium (includes lunch)
$25 - Annual Banquet students
$60 - Annual Banquet regular (this rate helps subsidize the student rate)

Location of 27th Graduate Student Symposium

Fisher Science Building
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405

Registration in ground floor lobby.

Parking for Symposium: Lot A1 or Lot H4f
at the corner of North Perimeter Road and Village Drive.

See interactive map of the Cal Poly campus

Register Online

Please join us on Saturday, April 6, 2019 at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo for the Society's annual banquet and the 27th Graduate Student Symposium. The Symposium is open to the public.

Those registering after April 3, 2019 should bring their own lunch.

Annual Banquet

5:00 PM – Social & Annual Meeting (No-host Bar)
6:00 PM – Dinner and presentation

The Society's annual banquet will follow immediately after the Symposium, with a keynote address by Dr. David Lowry entitled "“Mechanisms of local adaptations to California’s coastal and inland habitats in the yellow monkey flower.” Dr. Lowry is an Assistant Professor of Plant Biology at Michigan State University.

NEW Location of Banquet
PAC Pavilion
on the Cal Poly Campus at 1 Grand Ave.

Parking for the Banquet: Lot G-S on Grand Ave.
See interactive map of the Cal Poly campus

Field Trips

As part of the Symposium, we will be offering the following two field trips:

Friday, April 5, 2019: Nishi Rajakaruna will lead a trip to local serpentine rock outcrops
Fee/Registration: $5/person. Pre-registration required.
NEW Start time: 2:45 PM
Meeting place: Froom Creek, Johnson Ranch
Please park and meet at the trailhead by the Costco gas station, San Luis Obispo,
35.250889N -120.691507W.

Sunday, April 7, 2019: David Keil will lead a trip to Shell Creek Road, a famous viewing location in eastern San Luis Obispo County
Fee/Registration: $5/person. Pre-registration required.
NEW Start time: 8:15 AM
Meeting place: Santa Margarita Park and Ride, just off US 101 at the Santa Margarita exit

Hotels & Other Accommodations, including Camping Opportunities

We have prepared a list of several area hotels and other alternative accommodations, including camping sites you may want to consider.

Travel Grants for the 27th Graduate Student Symposium

The California Botanical Society is pleased to offer several $150 travel grants to eligible students who are members of the Society. Recipients will be randomly selected from the pool of eligible applicants, with preference given to students coming from outside San Luis Obispo County. You must be presenting your research at the Symposium.

Students who were awarded a travel grant may pick it up on April 6 at the registration table.