I have been at Olivet College since 2004 and have had many opportunities to use the skills I gained from my doctoral work with Dr. Richard Johnson and the cognate in college teaching, mentored by Dr. Chris Bauer. When I started, I was the only full-time chemist and my experiences at UNH gave me the confidence to teach courses outside of my field of study. One of my biology colleagues taught general chemistry lecture and biochemistry and I taught the rest of the chemistry curriculum; yes, even physical chemistry! In addition to teaching, I was tasked with making updates to the chemistry program. I initiated a curriculum review and revision in my third year and was lucky enough to have alumni donate funds to purchase a GC, and HPLC, and an IR for the teaching labs. With the chemistry curriculum revision, a forensic science minor was added which has been a great recruitment tool. Since I began at Olivet College, the chemistry program grew from one chemistry major to 20 majors and allowed us to hire a second full-time chemist. This past summer, the program received a very generous donation from an alumnus which allowed us to purchase a 60 MHz permanent magnet NMR and start an undergraduate research program. In addition to teaching, I have been involved in committee work, both elected and appointed, and I am the faculty coordinator for new student advising and assist with summer orientations. I represented the science department as senator for six years and was elected by the voting faculty as Senate President for the last three years of my tenure as senator. In 2016, the Provost appointed me chair of the science department and I enjoy the challenges that come with that position. I have also received a number of awards for excellence in scholarship and in advising, as well as being selected by several top five seniors for being the person who influenced them the most in their four years. I was also nominated by the Provost for the US Professors of the Year award in 2013. Outside of campus, I am a trained facilitator for POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) and have attended many workshops and symposia organized by the POGIL Project. In my second year at Olivet College, I shifted my teaching of organic chemistry to POGIL and have presented on my experiences at ACS and BCCE conferences. I have become active in ACS at both the national and local levels. I reactivated the college’s student chapter and we have been lucky to bring students to the spring ACS meetings each year to present on our chapter activities. I have been appointed to committee membership on Project SEED as well as Nomenclature, Terminology, and Symbols and I serve as the alternate councilor for our local ACS section. I am also active in the Michigan Colleges Chemistry Teachers Association (MCCTA) and have hosted the annual conference at Olivet College twice.
I owe a great deal of my success to my experiences at UNH and I am grateful to the faculty and staff in the chemistry department for allowing me to develop into the successful educator I am today.