DN Lee

A Biologist and STEM Trailblazer

DN Lee has been featured in Urban Biologist, which is part of a series exploring STEM trailblazers. She has a popular blog at Scientific American.
Since earning degrees studying animal behavior, Lee wanted to share her passion for science with young people. Through urban outreach, she has brought budding scientists into professional labs. She has guided them through the steps of the scientific method.

More importantly, Lee has shown young people that science doesnt have to be intimidating. In her popular Urban Scientist blog, she shares backyard science and outreach work. She also writes about her own research and other women and people of color. She is an influential scientist who is doing her best to encourage the next generation of scientists.

Lee has been recognized as one of 14 National Geographic Emerging Explorers for 2017. The group was honored for the way its members explore new frontiers and find innovative ways to remedy some of the greatest challenges facing the planet. The group was acknowledged at the National Geographic Explorers Festival in Washington DC.
Lee studies how small rodents behave in urban and rural settings. For instance, in Tanzania she collected details about the African giant pouched rat that could strengthen programs aimed at using them to sniff out landmines.

Lee encourages urban exploration and increased diversity in science. She also teaches mammalogy and urban ecology at Southern Illinois University while pursuing her quest to study animals. She is an advocate for natural history research which she terms as a fundamental and foundational science.
She is an outreach scientist who is focused on increasing minority participation in the STEM fields. Her research interests are mainly about the connections between ecology and its contribution to animal behavior.

She is a post-doctoral research associate act Cornell University, studying behavioral ecology which majors on Neuroethology. Her previous work includes studies of prairie vole behavior and personality. In her 2011 thesis, she proposed a new system of describing animal personality traits from more subjective, emotional description to observational adjectives.
Her outreach efforts focus on sharing science with the general public mainly through outdoor experiences and social media outlets. She founded the National Science and Technology News Service, which is a media advocacy group majoring in creating interest in STEM and science news coverage within the African American community.

She has accumulated many awards for her efforts to increase minority involvement in the STEM fields. Some of Lees most prestigious awards are the 2015 TED Fellow, White House Champions of Change for STEM Access and Diversity and the Huffington Post Science Scientists on Twitter: 30 Biologists and Chemists to Follow.

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