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Archive for the ‘Mark Miller’ Category

Miller and Spracklen Win Outstanding TA Awards

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

Mark Miller (Biochemistry graduate student) and Andrew Spracklen (MCB Graduate Student) have won 2014 Outstanding Teaching Assistant Awards from the University of Iowa Council on Teaching.

Mark MillerMark, who was nominated for his work in Biophysical Chemistry 1 in the fall of 2013, was lauded by students for his “welcoming nature,” “concern for his students,” and “sense of duty.” Dr. Pufall commended his teaching ability, writing, “Mark is gifted in the way he explains complex material, and in his patient, but unyielding instruction.”

About his classroom approach, Mark says, “My main focus in teaching was to view knowledge not as coming from me, but to empower students to solve problems on their own.”

Andrew was nominated for his work in Biochemistry II in the spring of 2013. He earned the admiration of both students and faculty for his ability to step in as a replacement TA several weeks into the semester. One of his students from that semester wrote, “He embodies all things educators and students at our university should strive to attain: intelligence, kindness, willingness to help, and excellent communication skills.”andrewspracklen

According to Andrew, “I find that if students are able to connect the course material to their own interests, they not only recall the information better, but also are more capable of integrating the core course concepts into their daily life.”

Congratulations to both TAs for their excellent work!

Highlights from the 65th Anniversary and 4th Annual Retreat

Monday, August 26th, 2013


The 2013 Biochemistry 65th Anniversary and 4th Annual Retreat, organized by Lori Wallrath, Charles Brenner, Maria Spies, Earle Stellwagen, Mark Miller, Lacy Barton, and Maren Rogers, was held on Saturday, August 24. The scientific program at the Levitt Center for University Advancement featured talks by Charles Brenner and Catherine Musselman, Director of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center, Dale Abel, and Director of the Iowa Institute of Human Genetics, Richard Smith. In addition, Gary Firestone (1980 PhD with Ed Heath), Tristram Parslow (1977 MD/PhD with Daryl Granner), Bob Deschenes (faculty from 1989-2004),  and Debbie Thurmond (1997 PhD with Alan Goodridge) gave scientific presentations.

The poster session featured 39 posters. Six total awards were given in three categories. In the undergraduate division, first place went to Dylan Thiemann (Wallrath lab), and second place to Liam Hovey (Shea lab). In the Postdoc/Research Assistant/Associate category, Jiannan Guo (Price lab) and Rebecca Fagan (Brenner lab) won first and second places, respectively . Two Lois Bigger Gehring Awards were given to support graduate student travel to research conferences. Lacy Barton (Geyer lab) and Jessica Maiers (DeMali lab) each won this award for best poster in the graduate student category.

The dinner at the Athletics Hall of Fame featured thoughts and reflections from PhD graduates of the department, including Morey Slodki (1955), Charles Fishkin (son of Arthur Fishkin, 1957), Billy Hudson (1966), Liskin Swint-Kruse (1995), and a video message from Alap Subramanian (1964). Along with former faculty members Charles Swenson, Robert Barker, Earle Stellwagen, Arthur Spector, Bryce Plapp, Robert Roskoski, Larry Solomonson, Alice Fulton, and Daryl Granner.

Thanks to everyone for participating.