Dr. Joel Parker began his career with an undergraduate project investigating sex determination in Drosophila. Before starting graduate school, he studied the neuropharmacology of psychoactive drugs at the Oregon Health Sciences University. His Ph.D. project focused on evolution and population genetics in social insects and his postdoctoral training in Lausanne Switzerland centered on the molecular basis of the extra-ordinary life spans of social insects. Following thathe taight statistics, evolution and animal behavior while working on a novel superoxide dismutase that he discovered in insects. Dr. Parker also worked on aging in bumble bees and the trade-offs of immunity, lifespan and neurodegenerative diseases.