Dan Schrider

A Passion for Population Genetics

Program: Ph.D. in Informatics, Bioinformatics track

Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio 

Career Goal: In a sense my goal is to keep doing what I am doing right here in the School of Informatics and Computing: honing my computational skills and using them to answer important biological questions.

Dan Schrider’s advice for prospective graduate students is simple: “Find a subject you are passionate about. The workload is a lot more manageable if you love what you are doing.”

His own passion is population genetics, and he’s currently working in the Hahn lab and collaborating with researchers from the University of California Davis on the analysis of 50 fruit fly complete genome sequences. “This data set has allowed us to examine genetic variation on a scale previously impossible in any multi-cellular organism,” he says, “More importantly, this project has given me the chance to meet and work with some of the most highly respected researchers in the field of population genetics.”

When Dan first heard about the field of bioinformatics as an undergraduate studying computer science, he knew immediately that it was what he wanted to do.

“I started taking biology courses the following semester and looking at different graduate programs. I quickly settled on the IU School of Informatics and Computing, and I have no doubt that I picked the right program. I am reminded of this every time I interact with my fantastic advisor or any other member of the bioinformatics faculty. The faculty here are excellent—not just as researchers, but as teachers and mentors. They are people who care deeply about the success of every student in the program. If I need some advice I can barge in on any one of them knowing that they will happily help me out.”