Grace A. Whittier Endowed Chair in Science
Established in 1992, this chair was made possible by estate gifts from long-time Northfield resident Grace Whittier and her sister Gladys (Petie) Coleman of California. The Buck Hill ski area in Burnsville was included as part of the Whittier estate, which also included bequests to Carleton College and the City of Northfield. Former holders of this chair have been James Cederberg (Physics) and Robert Jacobel (Physics).
At St. Olaf, Dr. Cole teaches Developmental Biology, Cell Biology and Genetics, Invertebrate Zoology, Island Biology in the Bahamas, Probing Life with Light, Equatorial Biology (Galapagos, Andes, Amazon), Island Biology, Life: Meaning & Mystery, Science and Stewardship. These courses span from introduction to specialized courses for Biology majors. In addition to teaching, Professor Cole enjoys research in the areas of the cytoskeletal and nuclear activities associated with conjugation (mating) in the ciliate, Tetrahymena thermophila. He and his team employ genetics, molecular genetics, biochemistry, pharmacology, and above all, advanced light microscopy techniques to try and unravel the logic of this fascinating developmental program.