Tyson Research Center has been fortunate to receive funds specifically dedicated to the support of undergraduate research experiences. We thank our generous donors for helping us to mentor the next generation of environmental scientists.
The Sexton Fellowship was established in 2004 in honor of Owen Sexton, Emeritus Professor of Biology and key advocate for the purchase of the Tyson property in 1963. Owen served at Tyson's director from 1996 to 1999.
During his academic career in the Department of Biology, Owen was well-known as a world-class wildlife biologist and ecologist. He studied ecosystems throughout Central and Latin America and other parts of the world including Missouri, where his varied research interests included amphibians, reptiles, and the endangered collard lizard in the state’s glades and prairies.
Owen began conducting research at Tyson in the 1960s, where his research interests varied from reproduction of oak trees to snakes and deer. Since his retirement, he has kept in touch with Tyson's growth and activity through annual visits to the center. Owen was a mentor for numerous students that have gone on to productive academic careers, and who cite him as a major influence in their academic growth and career trajectories.
The Sexton fellowship supports approximately one undergraduate fellow per summer, and has supported more than 10 summer research fellowships since its inception. Recent recipients of the Sexton Fellowship include:
2017 - Liam Engel, Biology (Ecology and Evolution) '19
2016 - Madeleine Mullen, Biology '18
2014 - Brianna Tiffany, Environmental Earth Science '16
*Students interested in becoming a Sexton Fellow should apply for a fellowship and designate their desire to be considered for a named fellowship.
News pieces about Owen:
- Effects of major regional floods on snakes
- Grand marshal at WashU commencement 2003
- A tribute to Owen Sexton, 2010