- February 2020
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology, Plant Pathology
Years in position: 6 months
Years at MSU: 6 years
Beverly Keasler is the outreach point-person for the Mississippi Bug Blues program. She organizes and leads events with students, professionals and the public.
The bulk of her team’s outreach focuses on invasive species awareness, especially detrimental insects such as Spotted Lanternfly, Emerald Ash Borer and Tawny Crazy Ants. They also highlight the importance of native ecosystems and protecting endangered species.
“My passion is conservation education, and I have somehow been blessed enough to have this as my second job at Mississippi State,” Beverly said. “I cannot imagine doing anything else now.”
Beverly’s bachelor’s degree is in human-wildlife conflicts, and she wasn’t sure what she was going to do upon graduation. This job became available to her when her undergrad mentor, Dr. Jessica Tegt, offered her a position teaching at an in-school and after-school science program in Starkville starting in 2014.
Her favorite part of her current job is teaching kids about nature and seeing them get excited about things they previously thought were scary or gross.
“Flexibility is probably the most crucial trait in order to be successful in this career,” Beverly said. “Another thing you cannot live without in this career is passion. If you are not passionate about your message, your audience knows and will not be invested in what you are saying.”
Beverly loves kayaking, scuba diving, and most things involving water. Her husband is a step-down unit nurse in Columbus. They have two dogs, a cat and a rabbit.