Associate Professor of Biology
Her work has focused on the structural biology of important macromolecular complexes, using techniques such as cell culture, electron microscopy, and 3D modeling. She is especially interested in viruses and bacteria that impact human health. She is the founder of the Youth Empowerment through Safer Sexuality (YESS!) program, co-founder of Hampshire's Collaborative Modeling Center, and is passionate about supporting under-represented students in science.
When the HIV virus was first identified as the cause of AIDS, people never imagined we still wouldn't have a cure 35 years later. What's happened in all that time? What is taking so long? In this seminar, we will read about the milestones of HIV research and discuss why finding a cure or vaccine has proven to be very difficult. Students can expect to learn about the life cycle of the HIV virus, methods of transmission, current tools for research, and social and political issues associated with the epidemic. We will examine different approaches to studying HIV and assess what is still unknown about its biology. A fair warning: this is a science course taught by a biologist, with a bit of a social science lens. Students should be willing to study beginner cell and molecular biology but no prior background is assumed.
This course will examine the structures and processes that contribute to the inner-workings of the eukaryotic cell. This knowledge is vital in understanding our bodies and helps to inform many other fields. We will develop this knowledge through paired seminar and laboratory sections. Students will complete independent research projects to examine one detailed aspect of the cell, and will communicate the results in oral and written formats so others will learn the breadth of cellular capabilities. Much of the lab work will take place in smaller groups outside of the scheduled class time, so students should expect to spend more hours outside of class compared to other courses. This course is designed with an active learning, flipped classroom approach, so students should come prepared to learn a lot of the content through independent activities rather than lectures or textbooks.