Join the Sharp Lab

The lab is an inclusive and safe space. Members of under-represented groups are encouraged to apply. Science is for Everyone!

The lab is currently accepting graduate students through the following graduate training programs:

Genetics Graduate Training Program

Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program (CMB)

Integrative Biology Graduate Program

Microbiology Doctoral Training Program (MDTP)


Contact Nathaniel to inquire about available postdoctoral positions.

Nathaniel Sharp

Assistant Professor

Nathaniel earned his PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto, and trained as a postdoc at the University of British Columbia. He is broadly interested in evolutionary genetics, and particularly the causes and consequences of mutation.

Denise Smith

Research Specialist

Denise earned a B.S. degree in biology (UW-La Crosse) and a master’s degree in Plant Pathology (UW-Madison). She has worked with fungal and viral plant pathogens of many plant species, but predominantly pathogens of trees. She is interested in evolution of fungal resistance to fungicides and how fungi evolve to maintain pathogenicity. In her spare time, Denise likes to garden, hike, and cross-country ski.

Numair Ali

Undergraduate Researcher

Numair is a third year undergraduate majoring in Genetics and also working towards a certificate in Computer Science. He wants to combine the two fields together to pursue a career in bioinformatics.

Madison Castle

Undergraduate Researcher

Madison is a sophomore majoring in Genetics and getting a certificate in Health and the Humanities. She hopes to pursue a career in the medical field one day that combines what she learns in medical school with her degree in Genetics. She is involved in campus with the Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children and is a certified EMT.

Aaron Esker

Undergraduate Researcher

Aaron is a sophomore undergraduate student majoring in Genetics and Genomics along with a Certificate in Business. Outside of studying, Aaron is an active member in the Undergraduate Genetics Association and loves to be outdoors. After college, he plans on pursuing a career in the biotechnology industry.

Caitlin Kestell

Undergraduate Researcher

I’m a sophomore studying Genetics and Environmental Science. I hope to someday earn my PhD and work in research and academia. I’m a member of the Distinguished Lecture Series here on campus and I love cats.

Chris Stein

Undergraduate Researcher

Chris is a third-year undergraduate majoring in Genetics and pursuing a career in research or forensic analysis. He loves to spend time outdoors hunting and fishing with friends and family.

Brant Strayer

Undergraduate Researcher

Brant is a third year undergraduate majoring in Genetics and Life Sciences Communication. He wants to pursue a career in research or genetic counseling.

Maryn Ugolini

Undergraduate Researcher

Maryn is a sophomore undergraduate student majoring in Genetics and Genomics and is pursuing a certificate in Global Health. She is involved on campus with the Undergraduate Genetics Association, MEDLIFE, and Badger Volunteers. She hopes to have a career in genetic counseling.