A Purdue senior isn’t just interested in the dead body; she’s also interested in the bugs crawling around it.
Brooke Richards, a senior in the College of Agriculture, is majoring in entomology with a minor in forensic science. She started to consider entomology just before coming to Purdue.
“My fascination with insects began in high school when my favorite teacher gave me cockroaches as graduation presents,” said Richards.
Richards’ ideal job is to become a forensic entomologist, who studies insects on and around death investigation scenes. Initially, she would like to aid in research in the field or get involved in toxicology. Hoping to have a flexible career at first, she looks to go to more school in the future with a more specialized job in forensics.
“Someday when I have a family that (is) older, (I will) become a coroner, which is a 24/7 on-call job,” said Richards.
Purdue does not have a forensic science major, but her setup with her major and minor work successfully as she finishes up her studies. Jonathan Neal, an academic adviser in the Department of Entomology, has worked with Richards to schedule her classes and make sure she pursues internships throughout her academic career.
“Some of the qualities she has are focus on academics and very much pays attention to what is required in completing her program on time,” said Neal.
Richards expands her interest in entomology and forensic science by being involved in the Science Club, Forensics Club and the Thomas Say Entomological Society.