I am generally interested in discovering and characterizing mechanisms by which cells control gene expression. Much of my career has focused on the regulation of ribosomal RNA synthesis, using an array of biochemical, genetic, and genomic approaches. As an independent academic investigator, I am privileged to be involved in the act of discovery every day. In addition, I take my roles as mentor and educator equally serious. Our goal is to create an environment where we can aggressively ask and answer important questions while training the next generation of scientists to be careful, critical, and content in the pursuit of knowledge.
I teach courses aimed primarily toward graduate students and professional students. My overall approach to education takes into account the fact that these students are adults who are well-trained, but who desire advanced education in research. I create courses where students can learn advanced topics in gene expression, RNA biology, and grant writing. In those courses, the environment is designed to feed a students curiosity and satisfy the desire for knowledge and personal improvement. I do not use traditional test-based approaches or negative reinforcement as motivation. To me, the students and I are grown-ups. Let's learn together as such.