During my time at St. Olaf I have been fortunate to teach a variety of classes here on campus and as part of St. Olaf's study abroad curriculum. In a typical year I will contribute to teaching general chemistry lecture and lab, two courses in biochemistry primarily as electives for juniors and seniors and an elective experimental biochemistry class for the Biomolecular Science concentration. One thing that hooked me on chemistry during my undergraduate days was the hands-on aspect of laboratory work. As chemists we not only get to see chemistry, we get to do chemistry. This desire for active learning has spilled over into my teaching. Years ago I adopted the evidenced-based methodology of the "flipped classroom" as the cornerstone of my teaching. In the flipped classroom time normally devoted to passive reception of a lecture is now dedicated to problem solving and discussion in small groups with close mentoring. I find in this scenario I do far more teaching and the student learning outcomes have been extremely favorable.
My research program continues to evolve as new projects and opportunities present themselves. My most recent research and collaboration has been in the field of molecular pharming where plants are used to produce therapeutic proteins for laboratory and clinic use. The projects challenge students to utilize their interdisciplinary skills having to consider the biological, chemical, ethical and financial aspects of doing science at the interface of medicine and biotechnology. For current students interested in initiating an inquiry about joining my research team please follow this link.
I take great pride in my service to both the chemistry department and the college wide community. I particularly like the opportunity to work with colleagues from across campus representing different approaches to making the college a better place to learn and work.
What keeps me in balance is spending time with my family, DIY projects, the great outdoors, coaching and playing softball.