Saturday, September 11, 2021
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De-stressing with exotic animals

Biology students hung out with a snake, a chinchilla, a hairless dwarf sphinx cat and other interesting species as part of the Careers and Cupcakes series.

“I decided to go because I love animals and thought going to the event would be a nice break from studying for my upcoming chemistry test,” Freshman Chitra Gohil said.

Alumnus Tyson Kelley talks to current Biology students about exotic animals.
Alumnus Tyson Kelley talks to current Biology
students about exotic animals.

Gohil added that she learned about some of the unique animals that she didn’t normally get to see, while at the same time enjoyed time away from the textbook.

The event, which took place on Sept. 21, also taught students about different careers available to those with a biology degree.

The Cupcakes and Careers series is part of the programming for the Biology Living Learning Community (LLC). School of Biological Sciences alumni lead this series, speaking about their careers and time at UMKC.

School of Biological Sciences 2008 graduate Tyson (Guttenfelder) Kelley returned for the September session. Guttenfelder is a Senior Quality Assurance Specialist at Trinity Biotech in Kansas City. In addition to his day job, Tyson and his husband, Kiley, also run The KyTy Company. The TyKy Company focuses on the care, raising and sale of small exotic animals and domesticated birds, reptiles and mammals.

“Many students have the impression that the only thing you can do with a degree in biology is go to medical or dental school or go into research,” event organizer Dr. Tammy Welchert said. “The reality is that the possibilities are endless and programs like Cupcakes and Careers and our new career courses are helping us to share many exciting opportunities with students.”

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