Christy Wolovich, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Biology
“In my classes, I use enthusiasm and compassion to maintain a positive environment so that students are able to work together to solve problems, generate novel ideas, and support one another during challenges. I focus on engaged learning activities that promote an understanding of both the practical skills and key concepts in Biology. By providing students with these experiences, I hope to inspire them to continue learning so that they are successful beyond the classroom.”
I have always had a fascination with the natural world. Growing up in New Jersey, I played in the creek and the woods and investigated everything from worms to rabbits. As a teenager, I moved to Florida and enjoyed studying science and playing softball. I attended the University of North Florida, where I majored in Biology and minored in Psychology. I graduated from their honor’s program and completed an undergraduate research project that examined on the impacts of a naturalistic enclosure on the behavior of captive gibbons. Although I was fascinated with all areas of biology from genetics to ecology, it was while volunteering at the zoo and observing the gibbons that I realized that I wanted continue studying behavioral ecology. I earned my Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Miami and my doctoral research focused on food sharing behavior of owl monkeys (Aotus spp). I studied captive monkeys at the DuMond Conservancy for Prim ates and Tropical Forests (Miami, FL) and traveled to Argentina to study monkeys in the field. Since graduate school, I have taught at Bucknell University, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, and MacMurray College. During that time, I was fortunate to teach Animal Behavior and Ecology & Conservation as part of a study abroad program in the Gambia, West Africa. While in the Gambia, I began to examine mixed-species associations of Western red colobus monkeys (Piliocolobus badius) and green vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus sabaeus). I am particularly interested in the effects of human disturbance on the primate populations and the implementation of effective conservation strategies. I am excited to return ‘home’ to Florida and join the Biology program here at Florida Southern College where I will teach Animal Behavior, Zoology and Environmental Science.
Dr. Wolovich enjoys traveling, hiking, biking and exploring nature.
Ph.D., University of Miami, Miami, FL, 2006
B.S., University of North Florida, Jacksonville, FL, 2000
Honors and Awards
- Dewey Wilkins Excellence in Teaching Award, MacMurray College 2013
- Faculty Development Grant, MacMurray College Behavioral responses to chemical signals in the nocturnal owl monkey (Aotus nancymaae), 2012
- Faculty Development Grant, MacMurray College, Mixed-species associations of monkeys in the Gambia, 2011
- Outstanding Teaching Assistant in Biology, University of Miami, 2007
- Women in Science Grant, Educating middle school girls about the tools and techniques in science at the DuMond Conservancy for Primates and Tropical Forests, 2006
- Kushlin/Frohring Grant, University of Miami, Food sharing between mates in the monogamous owl monkey (Aotus nancymaae): a test of the female nutrition hypothesis, 2006
- 1st place Natural Sciences, poster 2006, University of Miami Creativity and Research Forum Food sharing between mates in the monogamous owl monkey (Aotus nancymaae): the importance of female reproductive state.
- Kriloff Award, University of Miami, 2004
- Provost’s travel award, University of Miami, Award to present at IPS conference, Turin, Italy, 2004
- National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, The effects of food sharing on reproductive success in owl monkeys (Aotus spp.), 2003
- Provost’s travel award, University of Miami 2002, GAFAC award, University of Miami 2002, Awards to present at ASP conference, OK, USA
- Jay Savage Fund, University of Miami, Pair-bonding behaviors and their relationship to the proportion of extra-pair young in three species of gibbons (Symphalangus syndactylus, Hylobates lar, and H. agilis), 2002