When I enrolled in a college course in general microbiology I was amazed at what I learned, and I have been fascinated with this field of study ever since that introductory course. My interest in teaching began when I was a teaching assistant for a microbiology lab and from that point on I knew this was the profession for me.
My proudest accomplishment is that I have contributed to my field of study in a positive way and have challenged students to become even better scientists than I was at their stage of career.
My teaching revolves around the student as an active learner. Because team and individual learning are important in science, they are both used in my classroom and labs. Scientists often collaborate with others who have expertise in different fields, so I try to have my students work together as much as possible to gain different perspectives on the topics we cover.
My research focuses on three main areas: bacterial biofilms, molecular biology of viruses and genomics/bioinformatics. I recently started research in the areas of metagenomics and phage hunting and performed sabbatical research on vaccines and wound healing in spring and summer 2012 at NEOMED.
Best Part of the Job
My favorite part of my job is that I am continually learning more about my field of study and get to share that excitement with students.
I enjoy spending time in Bracy Hall because it is a building where occupants can interact with science at a level beyond the textbook. It is an exciting place to work and learn!
Students at the University of Mount Union have a lot of resources available to them. There is a feeling of personalized attention here that is not as tangible at other institutions of higher learning.
In the Department of Biology we assist students in developing a respect for their place in the natural world, and the liberal arts education helps them to be well-rounded in their learning. As students progress through the curriculum they are challenged to master an advanced skill set that prepares them for rewarding careers in science-based fields of study.