Faculty Research Interests

Research in the natural sciences at Gonzaga University covers a broad range of topics. In addition to the traditional definitions of the disciplines, we offer cutting-edge research at the interface of biology, chemistry, biochemistry, and physics. Explore our faculty and their research interests below.

Not all faculty have open research positions! Faculty research needs change each semester. To optimize being selected, students must check with the research mentors below before beginning the application process. A limited number of paid positions are available during the academic year.

For more independent research opportunities, check out our neighbors across the river at WSU Spokane, particularly in the College of Medical Sciences and the College of Pharmacy. Not all WSU faculty can take a research student but all welcome the chance to talk about their research so feel free to contact them regarding possible opportunities. In addition, you can find information about international research or off-campus summer research programs.

Faculty Research Interests

Elizabeth Addis: Mechanisms of Life History Control
Kirk Anders: Genetics and Genomics of Bacterial Viruses
Christy Andrade: Arthropod-borne Virus Transmission by Mosquitos
Betsy Bancroft: The Ecology and Conservation of Aquatic Systems
Julie Beckstead: Invasion Biology and Plant-Fungi Interactions
David Boose: Ecology of Rare Plant Populations in the Inland Northwest
Gary Chang:  Ecology of Predatory and Herbivorous Insects
Laura Diaz-Martinez: Discovery of Gene Function; Biology Education
Bill Ettinger: Research Areas: Disinfection of Catheter Ports and Characterization of Viral Proteins
Joey Haydock: Reproductive Partitioning in the Cooperatively Breeding Acorn Woodpecker
Stephen Hayes: Waterfowl Ecology
Hugh Lefcort: Predator/Prey Relations in Aquatic Crustaceans
John Orcutt: Paleoecology of the Inland Northwest
Marianne Poxleitner: Bacteriophage Biology, Plant Cell Biology, and Genetic Enhancement of Crops
Nancy Staub: Salamander Evolutionary Biology
Brook Swanson: Evolution of Complex Mechanical Systems in Animals


Wilson Bailey: Metal-Ligand Cooperation
David Cleary: Synthesis and Characterization of Extended Inorganic Compounds with Applications to Chemical Sensors, Batteries, and Catalysis
Shannen Cravens: Molecular Recognition of DNA by Transcription Factor Proteins
Matt Cremeens: Physical Organic Chemistry
Jeff Cronk: Enzymatic and Structural Studies of β-Carbonic Anhydrase
Greg Gidofalvi: Computational Chemistry/Electronic Structure
Kate Leamy: RNA Chemistry and Biology
Masaomi Matsumoto: Bioorganic Chemistry
Eric Ross: Stationary Phase Development for Chromatographic Analysis of Biomembrane Interactions
Jennifer Shepherd: Rhodoquinone Biosynthesis in Parasitic Helminths
Stephen Warren: Synthesis and Development of a Diagnostic Agent for Neurodegenerative Diseases and Type 2 Diabetes
Jeff Watson: Mechanism of Bacterial HMG-CoA Reductase, a Target for Novel Antibiotics


Erik AverPrimordial Helium Abundance
Chris Fink: Biophysics
Adam Fritsch: Nuclear Reactions
Matthew GeskeCosmic Rays
Nicole MooreOptical tweezer


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Spokane, WA 99258