Zach joined the lab in Fall 2017 as part of the Undergraduate Research Scholar program through the Texas Tech University Honors College. In his first year, Zach created a skeleton database of collections made from the Guadalupe Mountans National Park (GUMO). The collection of over 1500 specimens was made by TTU botanists when the Park first opened in 1973 and was previously undocumented. He presented the results of his database, including findings on rare and under-represented taxa, at the TTU Undergraduate Research Colloquium in April 2018.
Zach then assisted with the digitization of the GUMO collection, including mounting specimens, taking digital images, transcribing label data, and georeferencing. This effort is instrumental in allowing new research using the collection. In Fall 2018, he began a project to look at how stomatal density varies among taxa collected in the park 45 years ago by collecting data from several dozen species.
Zach graduated in 2019 and is now assistant curator at the Harvard Herbarium. Congrats, Zach!