Brooke Sykes is a doctoral student in the School of Plant Sciences. A native of Phoenix, she graduated from Arizona State University with a bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences, and from University of Mississippi with a master’s degree in Biology. Her master’s research included cultivating bacteria from bird feathers, which prompted her interest in the ecological factors that shape community composition and the mediators of host-microbe interactions. Her doctoral focus will be the evolution and persistence of species associations, especially between microbes and their plant hosts. Outside of the lab, Brooke enjoys mountain-biking with her dog, running, live music, art, cooking, and being active in the community.