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Education Board

Neil R. Baker

Chair, Education Board

 


INTRODUCTION

 

The mission of the Education Board is to educate individuals at all levels in the microbiological sciences. The Board supports student, postdoc, and faculty development through fellowships, publications, conferences, workshops, institutes, and networking opportunities. Seven committees (Table 1) and 11 ASM staff members support Board projects and work with internal and external entities to accomplish its goals and objectives. This report details Board accomplishments between June 2013 and May 2014.

 

FUNDING

 

The Board raised approximately $3.2 million for its programs. The largest grants support the ASM-CDC Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS), and the ASM-NSF Leaders Inspiring Networks and Knowledge (LINK) program. Others support the ASM-NSF Biology Scholars Program, Annual ASM Conference for Undergraduate Educators (ASMCUE), ASM Kadner Institute, and ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Institute.

 

HIGHLIGHTS 

  • Samantha Elliot, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, has been appointed editor-in-chief of the Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education (JMBE). Elliot led a JMBE planning meeting at ASM headquarters in March 2013. One focus of the discussion was expanding the journal’s scope to attract submissions on  advancing students in science, research in learning, institutional reform, citizen science, and medical and professional education. Although some progress has been made in attracting funding to help sustain the journal, continued effort is required.
  • The ASM-NSF LINK program selected its inaugural program fellow, Kelly Diggs-Andrews, who is responsible for organizing program activities and managing participants. The program also established mini-grants for collaborations between researchers and educators and provided travel awards for ABRCMS 2013 and ASMCUE 2014.
  • Fifty-three graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career scientists completed the 2013-2014 ASM Science Teaching Fellowship Program, a four-month training program to develop understanding and skills for science teaching positions at non-doctoral institutions. The program combines webinars, pre- and post-assignments, structured mentoring, and a community of practice.
  • The Committee on Graduate and Postdoctoral Education held a strategic planning meeting at ASM headquarters in October 2013. A major new focus of the committee will be preparing and delivering skills training through webinars and online learning. The ASM Science Teaching Fellowship Program is the first example of online learning.  
  • The International Education Committee held a strategic planning meeting at ASM headquarters in October 2013. From the many needs of the international community, the committee chose to concentrate efforts on adapting current ASM resources for use by international educators and students and forming alliances with ministries and universities to serve the needs of the microbiology educators globally.
  • To minimize expenses, Education Board committees are hosting annual governance meetings online via AdobeConnect. Although not as interactive as meeting face-to-face, the online format is efficient and effective. Committees will continue to meet informally in person when possible, e.g., at ASMCUE.

  

ACTIVITIES, PLANS, & ACCOMPLISHMENTS

 

Board activities are presented here in accordance with four ASM strategic goals: (1) promoting the scope and relevance of the microbiological sciences, (2) educating individuals at all levels in the microbiological sciences, (3) increasing professional opportunities for microbiologists at all educational and career levels, and (4) increasing the representation of women and minorities in the microbiological sciences at all levels.

 

Goal 1 Accomplishments

 

Activities directed toward goal 1 (promoting the scope and relevance of the microbiological sciences) include disseminating guidelines to help incorporate microbiology in science curricula, providing ASM with visibility at national student and educator meetings, and developing class activities that help students and teachers at every level understand the roles and significance of microorganisms. Specific activities include:

 

  • ASM Curriculum Guidelines. With the ASM curriculum guidelines for introductory microbiology courses now published, the ASM Committee on Undergraduate Education is identifying learning objectives mapped to core themes and fundamental statements identified in the guidelines and collecting feedback about incorporating guidelines in courses. The Committee is collaborating with ASM Press to ensure that the guidelines are incorporated into ASM textbooks.

 

  • ASM Biosafety Guidelines. The Board continues to address concerns about implementing the ASM Biosafety Guidelines, developed to encourage the safe handling of microorganisms in the teaching laboratory. Most concerns simply need clarification and suggestions for adapting guidelines in microbiology courses. The report of yet another case of salmonella infection linked to a teaching lab underscores the need to continue efforts to disseminate the guidelines. To that end, the guidelines were presented at an National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT) meeting in November 2013.

 

  • MicrobeLibrary. Submissions to MicrobeLibrary (www.microbelibrary.org), a peer-reviewed, online digital media repository for undergraduate microbiology, are on hold while the site migrates to ASM Science. Over the 12-month period, library use by the education community is strong with over 700,000 visits (500,000 unique visits) and 1 million page views. Tools to analyze usage have been added and will provide much need information to help determine future directions of the library.

 

  • JMBE. The Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education (JMBE; ‎) publishes articles that promote good pedagogy and design, foster scholarly teaching, and advance biology education research. A new editor-in chief, Samantha Elliot, began her appointment in January 2014. JMBE expanded its scope to include topics such as recruitment and retention, institutional transformation, and citizen science. Jmbe.asm.org, home of the journals abstracts and articles, was accessed 68,856 times in 2013. Over 2,400 users are registered to receive the journal’s electronic table of contents.

 

  • Outreach and Visibility. The Education Board sponsored ASM’s participation in several meetings and conferences for science students and educators in 2013-2014 (Table 2). Direct contact with attendees at these events helps keep ASM visible to the science education community.

 

  • K-12 Outreach. The Committee for K-12 Outreach continues to develop and publish activities (http://www.asm.org/classroomactivities) for use in K-12 settings. The Committee also sponsored several sessions at the 2013 NABT meeting; in one, Dr. Cristina Bressler of the CDC explained the ASM Lab Safety Guidelines and fielded questions about their implementation.

 

Goal 2 Accomplishments

 

Activities that particularly focus on strategic goal 2 (educating individuals at all levels in the microbiological sciences) include the following:

 

  • ASMCUE. The Annual ASM Conference for Undergraduate Educators (ASMCUE; www.asmcue.org) is planned for May 15-18. The conference will open with “Taking a Scientific Approach to Scientific Education,” a plenary lecture by Nobel laureate Carl E. Wieman. Other plenary lectures will focus on interactive classroom approaches to dealing with climate change and on mining of the nostril microbiota. A joint program with asm2014 will allow ASMCUE registrants to take part in several asm2014 activities, including the education plenary session, NextGen Microbiologist, which will be live-streamed to ASMCUE.

 

  • Biology Scholars Program. The ASM-NSF Biology Scholars Program (www.biologyscholars.org) offers a continuum of three professional development residencies to improve undergraduate biology education based on evidence of student learning. The Transitions Residency helps Scholars “transition” from conducting scholarly work in student learning to publishing in biology and/or science education venues. Assessment Residency Scholars learn to measure student foundational knowledge, monitor gains in learning, and collaborate with colleagues to improve student learning and performance. Research Residency Scholars learn to design projects that investigate student learning; understand methods for collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data on student learning outcomes; and identify the best venues for publishing study results. The 2013-2014 cohorts will complete their yearlong residencies at a capstone meeting during ASMCUE 2014.

 

Goal 3 Accomplishments

 

Board programs that support goal 3 (increasing the professional opportunities for microbiologists at all educational and career levels) include:

 

  • ASM-NSF LINK Program. Developed to build connections between NSF investigators and developing scientists, the ASM-NSF LINK Program (www.asmlink.org) supports NSF investigators to mentor developing scientist participants at the Board’s two largest events – ABRCMS and ASMCUE. LINK investigators will guide program mentees in communications, interpersonal relationships, interdisciplinary research, teaching, mentoring, leadership, management, ethics, career planning, etc. During the reporting period, the program established mini-grants for collaborations between researchers and educators, provided travel awards for ABRCMS and ASMCUE, and sponsored sessions at these meetings.

 

  • Fellowships. The Board offers several fellowships at the undergraduate through postdoctoral levels. In addition to receiving support to conduct research in the microbiological sciences, fellows are supported with other professional development activities: If accepted to present research at the ASM General Meeting, they are provided travel funds. Pending application acceptance, they are also supported to participate in three ASM training programs on scientific presentations, scientific writing and publishing, career planning, and grantsmanship. Tables 3 and 5 present data from the fellowship programs. In 2013, the Board published ASM Fellowship Programs (2010-2012), a three-year summary of fellowship initiatives.
  • Student and Postdoc Professional Development (www.asmgap.org). The Board sponsors three professional development institutes (Table 4) to help competitively selected undergraduate, graduate, and postdoc participants build skills required for successful research careers. The ASM Kadner Institute was held in July 2013 in San Jose, where attendees received guidance and practice in grant writing, scientific presentations, teaching, and mentoring. In December 2013, the Board published the comprehensive ASM Kadner Report: A Summative Report from 2001-2012. The ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Institute was held in March 2014. The institute offered training in writing and submitting manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals, plus individual manuscript critiques and guidance. The ASM Capstone Institute, scheduled immediately prior to asm2014 in May 2014, offers attendees opportunities to improve their presentation skills through formal sessions and guided small group practice sessions.
  • asm2014 Career Sessions. Each year, the Board sponsors career sessions at the ASM General Meeting. The Board’s third annual career workshop is planned for the opening day of asm2014. The event allows students to chat with at least three microbiologists from diverse backgrounds, positions, and employers in structured advising sessions. Participants will meet with advisers by moving from table to table at specific times, maximizing their number of conversations in a single afternoon.

 

Goal 4 Accomplishments

 

Board programs that support goal 4 (increasing representation of women and minorities in the microbiological sciences at all levels) include the Watkins Fellowship (Table 6) and two programs designed to ensure a diverse community of microbiologists:

 

  • ASM Undergraduate Research Capstone. Developed as the successor to the ASM Microbiology Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program, the ASM Undergraduate Research Capstone Program focuses on enhancing the presentation and networking skills of underrepresented minority students in the sciences. The selection process for 2014 Capstone awardees is currently under way, and the ASM Capstone Institute, a workshop for the awardees and Education Board fellows, will take place in June 2014, just prior to asm2014.
  • ABRCMS. The 2013 Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS; www.abrcms.org) was held November 13-16 in Nashville, TN. There were over 3,400 participants, including about 2,100 students, nearly 500 faculty and program directors, and 545 summer research and graduate program recruiters. Undergraduates and post-baccalaureates gave about 1,600 talks, culminating in nearly 180 awards (18 in microbiology). Sponsorship increased by about 20%, directly expanding ABRCMS' ability to offer dynamic conference speakers.

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

 

The Board is indebted to the Society for sustaining education programs through its ASM Fellowship Fund. I thank the following individuals for their continuing service: Susan Bagley (MicrobeLibrary Editorial Committee), Spencer Bensen (International Education Committee), Cynthia Nau Cornelissen (Committee on Graduate and Postdoctoral Education), Samantha Elliot (Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education Editorial Committee), Mary Sanchez Lanier (Committee on Minority Education), Sue Merkel (Committee on Undergraduate Education), Dave Westenberg (Committee for K-12 Outreach), and Christopher Woolverton (Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education Editorial Committee). Thanks also go to all the volunteers who work with each of these committees. None of the Board’s achievements would be possible without the extraordinary efforts of the ASM Education staff headed by Amy Chang, Irene Hulede and Kelly Gull. Thank you all!

 

DATA & STATISTICS

 

Table 1 – Education Board Committees: July 2013-June 2014

Table 2 – Sample of Education Board Presence at National Meetings: July 2013-May 2014

Table 3 – Student and Faculty Professional Development Institutes: 2012 and 2013

Table 4 – Student and Faculty Conferences: 2012 and 2013

Table 5 – ASM Fellowship Program Statistics: 2003-2013

Table 6 – ASM Robert D. Watkins Minority Graduate Research Fellows

 

 

Table 1. Education Board Committees: July 2013-June 2014

Committee

Services to Science Education Community

Committee for K-12 Outreach

Chair: Dave Westenberg, Missouri University of Science

  • Promotes microbiology in the K-12 community
  • Offers K-12 Classroom and Outreach Activities

Committee on Graduate and Postdoctoral Education

Chair: Cynthia Nau Cornelissen, Virginia Commonwealth University

  • Promotes excellence in research and teaching and access to diverse career opportunities in graduate and postdoctoral microbiology education
  • Programs include the Kadner and Scientific Writing and Publishing Institutes

Committee on Minority Education Chair: Mary Sanchez Lanier, Washington State University

  • Promotes access, excellence, professional development, and advancement of under-represented minorities in microbiology
  • Programs include the Watkins Fellowship, the ASM Undergraduate Research Capstone, and ABRCMS

Committee on Undergraduate Education

Chair: Susan Merkel, Cornell University

  • Promotes student and faculty professional development opportunities and resources
  • Offers ASMCUE and the Undergraduate Research Fellowship

International Education Committee Chair: Spencer Benson, University of Macau

  • Builds capacity for microbiology education globally
  • Ensures that ASM’s education resources have a global impact
  • Offers the ASM Leadership Program for International Educators

Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education Editorial Committee Chair: Samantha Elliot,

  • Promotes good pedagogy and design, fosters scholarly teaching, and advances biology education research
  • Offers coverage of science education via five sections: Research, Perspectives, Curriculum, Tips and Tools, and Reviews

MicrobeLibrary Editorial Committee Chair: Susan Bagley, Michigan Technological University

 

  • Promotes good pedagogy in microbiology, fosters scholarly teaching, and enhances understanding about the microbial world
  • Offers coverage of microbiology education via four sections: the Gallery Visual Media Briefs, Laboratory Protocols, and Critical Thinking Question Bank

 

 

Table 2. Sample of Education Board Presence at National Meetings: July 2013-May 2014

Meeting

Focus

Faculty

 

Annual Meeting, Society for the Advancement of Biology Education Research (SABER) (July 2013)

Explores using scientific methodology to inform the practice of teaching and ensure that all students learn science

2013 NSF Vision & Change Conference (August 2013)

Helps faculty improve science education through evidenced-based change

Annual Meeting, National Association of Biology Teachers (November 2013)

Promotes biology education and educators through publications, workshops, and awards

Integration of Strategies that Support Undergraduate Education in STEM (ISSUES) Meeting, Math Assoc of America (January 2014)

Shares research-based best practices and fosters multi-disciplinary collaborations among STEM faculty, societies, and journals

Annual Meeting, National Science Teachers Association (April 2014)

Highlights ideas and practices that enhance teaching and learning

Lilly Conference on College and University Teaching (May 2014)

Explores evidence-based strategies to improve student learning

Trainees

 

Leadership Alliance National Symposium (July 2013)

Develops underrepresented students into leaders and role models in academia, business, and the public sector

Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science National Conference (October 2013)

Highlights resources that help Latino/Native American students pursue advanced degrees in the sciences

Emerging Researchers National Conference in STEM (February 2014)

Seeks to increase diversity in undergraduate STEM education

AACU Diversity, Learning, and Student Success (March 2014)

Highlights interventions that hold promise for first-generation, low-income, or under-represented students

National Postdoctoral Association Annual Meeting (April 2014)

Explores and disseminates information on the latest issues in postdoctoral education          

 

 


TABLE 3. Student, Postdoc, and Faculty Professional Development Institutes: 2012 and 2013

Program Type

Institute

No. of

 

 

Applicants

Attendees

 

 

2012

2013

2012

2013

Faculty

ASM International Leadership Institute

37

22

8

10

 

ASM-JGI Bioinformatics Institute

18

N/A

17

N/A

 

ASM-JGI Functional Genomics Institute

20

N/A

13

N/A

 

ASM-NSF Assessment Residency Institute*

11

21

16

19

 

ASM-NSF Research Residency Institute

19

14

16

14

 

ASM-NSF Transitions Residency Institute

10

2

6

1

Student/Postdoc

ASM Kadner Institute

30

31

28

25

 

ASM Capstone Institute

N/A

N/A

49

63

 

ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Institute

19

29

17

19

TOTAL

164

119

170

151

 

*In 2012, some Research Residency applicants were accepted into the Assessment Residency instead.

 


 




TABLE 4. Student and Faculty Conferences: 2012 and 2013

Conference

No. of Faculty Attendees

No. of Total (Faculty, Students & Exhibitors) Attendees

Member

Nonmember

2012

2013

2012

2013

2012

2013

ASMCUE*

252

286

45

64

337

350

ABRCMS**

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

3,483

3,378

*The number of member/nonmember attendees at ASMCUE is limited to faculty participants. ** The number of member/nonmember attendees is not tracked for ABRCMS.

 

 

TABLE 5. ASM Fellowship Program Statistics: 2011-2013

Program

Year

Applicants

Awardees

Honorable mentions

Wait List

General Meeting Presentations

Watkins

2011

44

7

3

0

16

2012

24

5

2

0

17

2013

33

7

3

0

15

URF

2011

68

39

0

10

38

2012

122

56

8

9

33

2013

136

37

0

11

50

CDC

2011

45

8

N/A

2

N/A

2012

66

9

N/A

8

N/A

2013

50

6

N/A

4

N/A

URC

2011

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

2012

7

6

N/A

0

6

2013

32

17

N/A

0

16

 

 

TABLE 6. Robert D. Watkins Minority Graduate Research Fellowship Awardees: 2011-2013

 

Awardee

F

H

Institution

Mentor

Research Area(s)

2011-2014

 

 

 

 

 

Rodrigo Gonzalez

X

 

U. North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Virginia Miller

Bacterial pathogenesis

Sophonie Jean

X

 

Virginia Commonwealth University

Ghislaine Mayer

Malaria; Plasmodium cell biology, biochemistry, and protein export

Jennifer Juarez

X

 

U. Texas Health Science Center

William Margolin

Genetics and cell biology

Corrie Ortega

X

 

U. Washington

Christoph Grundner

Molecular biology, genetics, phosphoproteomics

Khavong Pha

X

 

U. California-Davis

Lorena Navarro

Bacterial pathogenesis

Alexis Valentin-Vargas

X

 

The U. Arizona

Raina Maier

Environmental microbiology

Nana Wilson

X

 

Morehouse School of Medicine

Jonathan Stiles

Infectious disease immunopathogenesis

2012-2015

 

 

 

 

 

Carmen Dickinson-Copeland

X

 

Morehouse School of Medicine

Jonathan Stiles

Infectious disease - tropical medicine

Kalani Halemano

X

 

U. Colorado Denver

Mario Santiago

Immunology response to retroviral infection

Ankunda Kariisa

X

 

U. North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Rita Tamayo

Bacterial pathogenesis

Jordan Mar

X

 

U. California, San Francisco

Susan Lynch

Microbiome and host microbe interactions

Kristen Merino

X

 

Tulane U. School of Medicine

Nirbhay Kumar

Immunoparisitology

2013-2016

 

 

 

 

 

Nicole Abreu

X

 

U. California, Berkeley

Arash Komeili

Bacterial cell biology

Denise Bronner

X

 

U. Michigan-Ann Arbor

Mary O'Riordan

Innate immunity and microbial pathogenesis

Corey Clemans

 

X

U. Washington

Kevin Urdahl

Immunopathogenesis of M. tuberculosis

Tammi Duncan

X

 

U. New Mexico

Diana E. Northup

Bacteriology

Kristen Howery

 

X

Emory University

Jorge Vidal

Bacterial genetics

Zegbeh Kpadeh

X

 

U. Virginia

Paul Hoffman

Infectious diseases

Malik Raynor

 

X

U. Texas Health Science Center

Theresa Koehler

Pathogenesis and gene regulation

Margaret Tarrant-Elorza

X

 

U. Nevada, Reno

Gregory Pari

Virology

Dina Tsukrov

X

 

Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Ekaterina Dadachova

HIV/AIDS, viral reservoirs, drug discovery

Rachel Yunck

X

 

Harvard University

Thomas Bernhardt

Bacteriology/cell envelope biogenesis

 

a Award terms follow the academic calendar (September to August). F, Fellowship. H, Honorable Mention.

 

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