After graduating from the University of Minnesota Morris, a small campus in western Minnesota, he joined the Peace Corps and taught biology in a "bush school" in western Ghana as well as an exposure to the tropical insect environment. After a year at U of M, Minneapolis, and a stint in the U.S. Army, he lived in Japan for two years studying Japanese language and culture. He returned to USA to the University of Notre Dame, studying mosquito genetics, ecology and evolution. After 20 years at Notre Dame as a graduate student and research faculty, he was invited to Yale School of Medicine as a research scientist to work on the population genetics and taxonomic relationships amongst the 400 species of South American phlebotomine sand flies. Currently, he continues the sandfly work and is completing a 15-year set of education grants translating current research in medical entomology into K-12 teaching curricula.