Congrats to Matt Cleere for an outstanding PhD defense talk and Q&A on Nov 17, wrapping up the work required for his Ph.D. in the GC Ph.D. Program in Biology. Matt brought yeast to the lab, merging his experience and passion for the Awesome Power of Yeast Biology (TM) with the lab’s long-standing tradition in photosensors and optogenetics.  Suffice it to say that today’s talk was cells to molecules and back, consistent with this broad view.

Beyond this, great to see Matt’s impact on the lab, the Structural Biology Initiative, and more broadly.  Today’s Ph.D. defense was extremely well attended by professional colleagues, personal friends, and family – a great reminder that while a Ph.D. is an ultimate recognition of individual effort and discovery, it is continually supported by spheres of people both within and outside academia.

Finally – many thanks as always to the collaborative and rich environment surrounding us at the ASRC Structural Biology Initiative and at CCNY’s Center for Discovery and Innovation for helping stimulate this work.  Thanks to Matt’s dissertation committee members, three of whom hail from this neighborhood – Anu Janakiraman, Stefan Pukatski, and Mark Emerson – as well as Jean Gaffney (Baruch College) and Jared Toettcher (Princeton) further afield.