Genetics student Brenen Skalitzky wins two prestigious photography contests


Brenen Skalitzky holding his "Eyes of the Connection" photo while smilingBrenen Reid Skalitzky received the UW–Madison Global Day Photo Contest Winner award and won the 2023 UW Cool Science Image Contest for his “Eyes of the Connection” picture. He took the picture in Costa Rica while participating in the UW Banking Animal Biodiversity program, led by Professor and Department Chair Francisco Pelegri.


Photo of a red-eyed tree frog sitting at a stick while looking directly at the camera.
“Eyes of the Connection” by Brenen Skalitzky

He writes about his experience in his description of the photo: “While participating in the UW Signature Program ‘UW Banking Animal Biodiversity in Costa Rica’ in Spring 2023, I captured a photo of student Emily Olvey curiously observing the iconic, red-eyed tree frog (Agalychnis callidryas). This photo was taken at a nature reserve in Sarapiqui, Costa Rica, and demonstrates the excitement and focus of our trip, which aimed to promote the conservation of these precious species and the maintenance of biodiversity in the region.”


The image will be displayed from September 28 to the end of 2023 in an exhibit at the McPherson Eye Research Institute’s Mandelbaum and Albert Family Vision Gallery on the ninth floor of the Wisconsin Institutes for Medical Research, 111 Highland Ave. The exhibit opens with a public reception at the gallery from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. and also includes historical images of UW science in celebration of the 175th anniversary of the University of Wisconsin’s founding.