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Featuring news, updates and stories by and for the CBS community, Connect is your resource for the latest from the College of Biological Sciences.

Checking in With Dean Forbes - April 2021

Each year around this time, the University asks colleges to present our priorities for the coming year to the provost and other University leaders. The College continues to advance its mission with strong enrollment and graduation rates, incremental increases in research dollars and robust engagement efforts. We look to build on that momentum in the coming year.

Our top priorities, outlined in the FY22 CBS Compact, going forward are to:

Holey homemakers

Postdoctoral researcher at Cedar Creek organizes a team of contributors to learn more about red-headed woodpeckers, ultimately informing conservation efforts and innovating wildlife research methods.

woodpecker stands on branch beside cavity in tree

CBS supports our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander community members

A message from Dean Valery Forbes sent March 18, 2021:

CBS community,

Earlier this week, we learned of the violent attacks in Atlanta that resulted in the deaths of eight people, most of them women of Asian descent. These reprehensible acts are consistent with a widespread pattern of violence against Asian Americans and women in this country. 

Alumni at Work: Paul Savereide


As senior associate general counsel at the University of Minnesota, CBS alum Paul Savereide (J.D. '91; Ph.D. Cell and Developmental Biology, '91) draws on the skills he learned in the lab to provide guidance on a range of issues from data privacy to patents for new technology. He shares a bit about his path from Ph.D. to J.D. and offers some advice to biology students interested in the law.

Checking in with Dean Forbes - March 2021


A year ago, we found ourselves at the beginning of the pandemic. Classes moved online and uncertainty about the future pervaded our lives. Much has changed in that time and uncertainty remains, but the path forward is clearer and hope for a return to some version of normal seems to be within reach. In the meantime, the work of educating, discovering and engaging continues.

Research redirected

With the pandemic, some CBS labs shifted course in 2020 to focus on COVID-19 related questions.

illustration of SARS-CoV-2

The onset of COVID-19 pandemic changed the world as we know it. Research in CBS labs changed course, too. For many labs it meant delayed experiments or cancelled field seasons. It meant additional time to write and analyze, but less time to gather new data. 

SciSpark 2021

Five minutes, five slides, no limit to the fascinating things you will learn about the living world!

SciSpark 2021