Education and outreach
Outreach via media:
Our discoveries that the centric diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana has a functional sexual pathway and that ammonium reliably triggers this species and several others into sexuality received a fair bit of press. OSU’s Steve Lundeberg’s news release started the news trending…
And then, NPR’s Science Friday invited me on the air for a little chat about it:
Courses I teach:
General Microbiology (MB 302, Fall terms) ~
This course describes microbial cytology, physiology, evolutionary relationships, growth and control of growth. The roles of microorganisms in nature, in disease, and as useful tools in biotechnology are discussed. Of particular interest is metabolic diversity. Specific examples of unique microbial processes are presented.
The foundational course required for all MB, FST, IB, and BHS majors. It also draws students from ANS, FW, BPP, and others.
Supplementary curriculum (videos, pdfs, news articles, etc.)
Forms of motility:
Other stories about amazing microbes…
Spores working as machines, New York Times video
This course examines the physical, chemical, and biological factors responsible for changes in the distributions and activities of microbes in soil and aquatic environments. The course aims to provide an overview of physiological ecology including metabolic strategies of microbes and their interactions that are strongly rooted in energetics. Environmental heterogeneity across broad scales (i.e., from the molecular to the global) is emphasized to reveal physiological flexibility within a single organism and adaptive strategies that allow microbes to optimize growth in their dynamic environments.
This course encourages active participation of students with separate break out discussions with undergraduates and graduates. Microbial Ecology draws students from MB, BEE, CBEE, CSS, CEOAS, FW, and others.
Supplementary curriculum (cool stuff):
1977_Purcell_life_at_low_reynolds_number, A physicists view of microbial movement.
Scientific Skills (MB 511, Fall terms) ~
This course provides practical information for incoming graduate students to alleviate confusion and anxiety about processes that are common to all students as they chart their paths through graduate school. This course advises about strategies that enhance success in advanced degree programs and provides students with key tools, such as effective literature search and management methods and presentation skills that are essential during graduate school. A key goal is to develop a strong cohort that students can tap for assistance and support throughout their graduate school years. This course is open to all majors.
Writing, writing, writing. It is painful and then becomes exhilarating. I have to trust in the process – and to do so, follow some rules. They work!