A UF assistant professor of entomology received an $822,000 grant.

Professor Christine Miller found out she received the Faculty Early Career Development award in November from the National Science Foundation. She said she thinks she’ll have access to the money, which will go toward teaching and research, in February. 

She said she had already begun working on her proposal for next year because she didn’t expect to get it the first time.

Miller said she applied in July. She will use the grant to research animal weapons using leaf-footed bugs. She’ll use the bugs as a way to observe fighting tactics seen in animals. With the money, Miller said she hopes to help graduate students with research and bring other students to entomology research.

“There is nothing more rewarding than getting students excited about science and sharing with them,” Miller said.

Lauren Cirino, a UF evolutionary ecology master’s student, said with the grant, students may be able to do research outside the country. 

Part of the grant will pay for course undergraduate research experience classes, which will allow students more hands-on experience, Cirino, 32, said.

“We’re going to have a lot more funds to do a lot more research,” she said.