I work in the fields of genetics, endocrinology, molecular, and cellular biology. I was raised in Birmingham, AL and my education and scientific pursuits have taken me all over the United States and abroad.
My goal in research is to use genetic & molecular approaches to better understand cellular communication, reproductive development and hormonal signaling. I aim to understand how genetic mutations, environmental variables, and chemicals can induce or disrupt cellular signaling associated with cellular differentiation, development, and reproduction. In order to study these topics, I have experience working with a multitude of biological organisms including bacteria, corals, sea anemones, and zebrafish.
My passion for teaching has provided me the opportunity to teach and develop multiple courses in the biological sciences, including human anatomy & physiology, cellular biology, molecular biology, and genetics. Through the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) I have earned certifications and expanded my knowledge of teaching practices and pedagogy.
Molecular mechanisms of rare disease COVID-19 Neuropsychiatric disorders (schizophrenia, autism, epilepsy) Drug screening Hormonal signaling Development Reproduction
Everybody learns differently. As a scientist I learn best when I am actively doing something. I define myself as an active learner. In the classroom, I encourage students to discover how they learn best, by incorporating listening, reading, writing, actively engaging, and artistically working through course material into my curriculum. My goal is for students to leave my classroom as better students, with excellent learning habits and a clear understanding of how they learn best. I teach to inspire students on a journey of life-long learning by creating an engaging and organized learning environment that is committed to diversity and inclusion.
I encourage students to work together and communicate. I constantly intermix groups to keep them engaging with a diversity (gender, age, cultural and ethnic backgrounds) of other students, encouraging them to interact with people outside of their comfort zone. Through these interactions students are exposed to a variety of viewpoints and have the chance to share their thoughts and experiences in a natural way without being singled out.
Through small-group discussions, lab work, field work, and group presentations I encourage them to work together as a team. Periodically, I check in with them about their experiences working as teams and help them to be open to new ideas. In my teaching, I use every opportunity to discuss different cultures and highlight researchers of different backgrounds and embolden my students to go seek out new experiences. I aim to teach them the benefit of working with different kinds of people and give them the confidence to go out and communicate with a diversity of people in the world around them.
Overall, I aspire to support different types of learning by providing students with an engaging in-class experience, while assigning a variety of different assignments to work on outside of class. I teach with excitement and enthusiasm and make the time in class as fun as possible. I am available and approachable to my students and always encourage them to email me with any questions and attend office hours. My goal is for them to enjoy learning, be curious about science and establish excellent learning skills that will last long after our time together.