Vonnie D.C. Shields
Vonnie Shields, Ph.D., is currently Full Professor in the Biological Sciences Department and Acting Dean in the Fisher College of Science and Mathematics at Towson University, Towson, MD, U.S.. Dr. Shields’ laboratory engages in multidisciplinary research directed towards exploring the importance of gustatory, olfactory, and visual cues in the selection of food sources by carrying out behavioral and electrophysiological studies on larval and adult insects. In addition, her lab examines the structural organization of insect sense organs using transmission electron- and scanning electron microscopy. The overall goal of this research is to acquire a better understanding of the sensory mechanisms by which insects find host-plants and detect plant-associated volatiles. The aim is to discover possible novel biocontrol agents against insect pests. Dr. Shields studied biology at the University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan, CA. Her interest in insect chemosensory research began after her undergraduate studies, when she started her Ph.D. studies at the same institution. For her Ph.D., she carried out research at the University of Regina and the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, CA. After graduating, she accepted a Research Associate Position to conduct postdoctoral studies at the Arizona Research Laboratories Division of Neurobiology, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, U.S., before she accepted a faculty position at Towson University.