UMSL alumna Danielle Lee

Danielle Lee earned a doctoral degree in biology at UMSL last year. In June, Scientific American hired Lee as a blogger.

Danielle Lee is living a blogger’s dream. Last month she was chosen as one of Scientific American’s premier science bloggers – a paid gig that gives her great exposure in the blogosphere.

“I was flattered to be asked,” said Lee, of St. Louis, who earned a doctoral degree in biology last year from the University of Missouri–St. Louis. “It’s an honor to join a community of other bloggers, especially when backed by a major science magazine.”

Lee, who has written her Urban Science Adventures! © blog since 2006, writes about diversity and outreach.

“There are not many people of color in the science blogging community,” she said. “I write to make science accessible and Scientific American is a popular magazine directed to the average person, so it’s a great fit.”

Lee was personally invited to join the magazine by Bora Coturnix, a well-known science blogger who signed on as SA’s blog editor. She will write for them at least four times per month, but will continue with Urban Science Adventures and her other blog, SouthernPlayalisticEvolutionMusic, which explores evolution through hip-hop music.

Lee’s been busy since she graduated from UMSL. In June, she received the Young Professional of the Year award by the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis Young Professionals and her urban science blog was named as a finalist for the 2011 Black Weblog Award in the best science and technology category

When not blogging, Lee works for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources with the State Parks Urban Population Outreach Program.

“Basically, I take church and community center groups from the city to daily field trips to nearby state parks,” Lee said. “I can’t believe I get paid to play outside.”

Lee said she sees a lot of budding naturalists.

“I show them a new way to have fun outside through hikes, identifying plants, bugs and wildlife,” she said.

In the fall, she will start at UMSL teaching animal behavior and – if enough people sign on for it – a class teaching evolution through hip-hop.

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Kylie Shafferkoetter

Kylie Shafferkoetter