Franz Scherping is a PhD student at North Dakota State University. With expertise in wildlife research, data management and analysis, Franz brings experience in both environmental monitoring and wildlife handling. His current research involves the use of genomic databases to analyze genomic datasets with the interest of studying genotypes and the regulation of genes and their respective modes of expression. Franz is fascinated by phenotype expression and trait distribution throughout a population and the impact these have on the fitness of a given lineage. He loves how science allows him the chance to not only earn a living but also grow his knowledge and understanding of the natural world.
Franz first realized that he wanted to be a scientist when his childhood interest in animals and the natural world didn’t dissipate as he grew older. As he continued to discover and grow, he realized that he was destined for a career in the biological sciences. If Franz hadn’t had the opportunity to purse his love of science, he believes he would have been a great documentarian. It would have given him an outlet to interface with the wonders of the natural world in addition to the privilege of sharing it with others. The best advice Franz has received is: don’t lie. Simply say, “I don’t know” when you don’t know or have the answer.
Some of Franz’s fondest memories were during his time in Australia where he had the opportunity to research native wildlife. At one point in his journey he found himself at the bottom of a river recovering research equipment. He had no extra clothes so he spent the rest of the day soaking wet! He has been scratched by a kangaroo, chased by an emu and looks forward to many more adventures (and stories!) as he continues to pursue his love of science.