My mission as an academic educator is to teach gerontology, and therapeutic strategies for age-related diseases, to undergraduate, graduate, fellows, residents and practitioners in health care fields related to aging. My goal is to provide high-quality, state-of-the art teaching that encompasses my expertise in gerontology, neurology, endocrinology and metabolism. I focus particularly on neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimers disease and have been committed to translating my research findings into strategies to combat this disease.
My teaching philosophy is to communicate materials in a clear and concise manner utilizing slides, overhead projectors, chalkboards and video presentations. My classroom teaching introduces students to the basic mechanisms of disease pathogenesis starting at the whole organism and working through the organ, cellular and molecular levels such that an integrated picture of the disease process is communicated. This information can then be utilized for problem based learning. I utilize a pedagogical method to teaching introductory or advanced course. In addition, I organize and moderate a monthly seminar series for all levels that runs from September through June each year.
My clinical teaching philosophy has been to communicate current advances in the mechanisms of disease, and in particular the diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimerís disease. My clinical teaching of medical students and physicians at all levels has comprised teaching the principles of geriatric medicine as well as the latest cutting-edge research in the areas of neurodegenerative diseases. The use of problem based learning is particularly effective in imparting knowledge to clinicians. Incorporation into my lectures of the translational research that I conduct in my laboratory helps demonstrate how basic research can be utilized to find novel therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.
My mentoring philosophy is to transmit my passion for discovery, and to teach essential conceptualization and problem solving skills that will be an asset for the studentís future career. My goal as a mentor is to prepare students for careers as independent research scientists. I achieve this through the following three training processes:
1. Training Students to Conceptualize, Problem Solve and Think Critically About Biological Research
2. Training Students to Become Effective Communicators
3. Training Students to be Responsible and Productive Scientists
My mentored research over the last 7 years includes the supervision of 4 post-doctoral fellows, 6 graduate students, 3 MSTP/BSTP rotation students and 40 undergraduate students. My students have been competitive at gaining international, national and local honors and awards as a result of their mentoring in my laboratory (14 awards including General Sir John Monash Award, AFAR Graduate Fellowship, Hilldale Research Fellowship, SROP, Howard Hughes Fellowship and Graduate Student Mentor Award among others). I have been a member of 13 thesis (Ph.D./M.Sc.) committees, 5 external graduate review committees
and 3 proposition defense committees. I have been a member of 8 graduate training programs (5 at UW-Madison, 3 at CWRU) and have supervised/mentored 11 research technicians over the last 7 years.
2005-present - Trainer, Endocrinology and Reproductive Physiology Training Program, UW-Madison
2005-present - Trainer, Neuroscience Training Program, UW-Madison
2004-present - Trainer, Cellular and Molecular Biology Training Program, UW-Madison
2003-present - Trainer, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Training Program, UW-Madison
2002-2003 - Trainer, Medical Scientist Training Program, CWRU
2001-2003 - Member, Neuropathology Training Program, CWRU
2001-2003 - Member, Molecular and Cellular Basis of Disease Program, CWRU