Clara was featured on the Ecological Society of America’s (ESA) blog as a 2020 NEON-ESA Early Career Scholar. This program supports early-career scientists in attending the ESA Annual Meeting and a pre-conference meet-and-greet where they can connect with peers. The theme of the 2020 Annual Meeting was “Harnessing the Ecological Data Revolution” – which made it an ideal venue for learning to leverage large datasets such as those available from the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON). Read more about Clara’s experience as a NEON-ESA Early Career Scholar here.

“Above all, the most valuable part of my ESA 2020 experience was meeting more senior scientists in my field. I was a speaker in Symposium 14, on the patterns and drivers of large-scale fungal diversity. After a live Q&A session, the other speakers and I made time for a “virtual happy hour” over Zoom, where we pondered over the reasons for discrepancies in our results, and where I received specific feedback on my statistical methods.

The theme of this year’s meeting was “Harnessing the ecological data revolution.” As a scholar who is actively working with NEON data, this was encouraging to me, as many speakers presented specifically on analyzing and combining large datasets.”

– Clara Qin
University of California Santa Cruz