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Jesse N. Granger

Ph.D. Candidate in Biology | Sönke Johnsen Lab | Duke University
B.S. BioPhysics | College of William and Mary 


My journey to science started in a closet. In high-school I developed a fascination with light and how it interacts with the human eye. I wanted to better understand how eye-color impacted vision. So I started running experiments out of the biology classroom’s storage closet, and never turned back.

I completed my B.S. in BioPhysics at the College of William & Mary where I continued to build on my interest in light. I completed an honors dissertation which focused on learning about how diatoms, a type of single cellular algae, are able to capture light so efficiently. My senior thesis attempted to enhance the photon-capturing abilities of solar panels by incorporating diatoms into their design.

As a Ph.D. student, I became more interested in the components which make up light: electricity and magnetism. My research interests shifted to learning about how animals perceive the electro-magnetic spectrum and use it to perform complex behavioral tasks. Specifically, my research interests now focus on how animals use magnetic and electric cues to navigate and orient in the natural world. Click on my research tab to learn more!

In addition to research, I also love to share science with others. I have been involved in several journalism and communications internships, publishing works online with the Pulitzer Center for International Crises Reporting, and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science. Visit the “Science Communication Publications” section of my CV page to read some of the pieces I have written!