MU Spotlight 20/20
What is your role at the University and what is something many may not know about the work you do?
I teach a variety of courses in Biology and Neuroscience such as Anatomy and Physiology, Neuroscience, Human Physiology, Histology, Brain Sex, Introduction to Neuroscience Methods and Neuroscience Senior Seminar. I also mentor SOAR and Honors research students as we investigate protective therapies in rat models of Parkinson's disease. I supervise the Neuroscience Program and serve as president of the Lehigh Valley Society for Neuroscience Chapter.
My favorite spot on campus is…
Peter Hall on south campus—it is where my daughter had one of her first violin recitals when she was only 6 years old. To hear her play her music in such a beautiful space was a moment I will always treasure.
What’s your favorite Moravian tradition?
Vespers! I have the opportunity to see (yet again) how wonderfully gifted our students are. I also feel that it is a fantastic representation of how so many undergraduates, regardless of major, share their time and talents in this incredible event!
Have you received a #MyMoPaw?
I received one from President Grigsby. Of the five presidents I have worked for throughout my academic career, he is truly the most appreciative of the work of his faculty and staff. He has such a love for Moravian University and he continually strives to make it an even more special place for our community.
What color do you love?
Blue—I find it very soothing. I read somewhere that the color blue represents trust and responsibility. It seeks peace. So, with that in mind, I had my office painted blue!
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
I'm a neat freak. I’ve gone as far as to vacuum my pug, Frodo, during his shedding season (please don't judge me!).
Who is your hero? Why?
This is easy: My daughter, Emma. For someone so young, she has had to overcome some of life's unusual struggles. But, she is so resilient and full of kindness and grace. She makes me want to be a better mother for someone so amazing.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
My college mentor once said to me, "enjoy the little things in life, for someday you will realize that they were the big things." Given how quickly time goes by, it has served me very well. I found a plaque with this saying in a shop last year. It is now in my office so my students may receive this same advice as well.
Why do you like being a neuroscientist at a place like Moravian?
There is something very profound in trying to understand the brain and human behavior. I went into this discipline because I had such a curiosity about the brain and how it functions. But, the more I learn, the more I respect its complexity and the mysteries it represents. I will leave this earth without having all the answers about how neurons die, how the brain repairs itself or how we manifest such a range of emotions and thought processes. But, it's not about the end result. It's about the journey. I love my profession. I love engaging our students in this journey! They will help us get one step closer to the answers to the many questions about this pretty amazing 3-pound organ that makes us who we are.
I can never resist a good _______.
Piece of chocolate cake!