Rebecca Tripp speaks about her research with real passion, emotion that goes far beyond the fascinating organisms she studies. When she talks about her research with tardigrades, tiny, eight-legged creatures that she collected from the tops of trees, she doesn’t just talk about science. Rebecca describes her adventures in the treetops, and what it took to get there. She talks about overcoming fear, working through challenges and giving your best.
Rebecca has faced some challenges of her own. A spinal cord injury means that Rebecca is in a wheelchair. But that hasn’t stopped her. She works with Meg Lowman, an ecologist at the California Academy of Sciences who studies the world of the tree canopy. With Lowman, Rebecca has been studying tardigrades, which are known as extremophiles for their ability to live everywhere, from the tops of trees to the leaves of your lettuce and can even survive in space.