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Prof. Campbell Wins National Genetics Association Teaching Award

by Davidson College
Campbell implementing "Hawaiian Shirt Fridays"
In the spirit of making research fun, faculty and students alike in Campbell's summer genomics lab recognize "Hawaiian Shirt Fridays."

The Genetics Society of America has named Davidson College Professor of Biology A. Malcolm Campbell as recipient of its 2013 Elizabeth W. Jones Award for Excellence in Education.

The GSA recognized Campbell's steadfast commitments to teaching, research and scholarship. Campbell created the James G. Martin Genomics Program at Davidson, and continues to serve as its director. He introduced courses in genomics and synthetic biology to the curriculum, and co-authored with King Associate Professor Laurie Heyer of the mathematics department the first true genomics textbook for undergraduates, titled, Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics. He and Heyer have also directed scores of students in research projects that include building a bacterial computer, and using the principle of evolution to optimize drug production by microbes.

Campbell founded the Genome Consortium for Active Teaching (GCAT) in 2000, and through it has trained more than 360 undergraduate faculty members to bring genomics into the undergraduate curriculum. Originally focusing on delivering affordable DNA microarray experiments to students, GCAT now also brings the tools and resources of synthetic biology and sequencing to undergraduates nationwide. With funding from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and National Science Foundation, GCAT has helped more than 36,000 undergraduate students conduct their own microarray experiments.

Campbell has received several previous honors for his commitment to science education and Davidson College. He received the American Society for Cell Biology's Bruce Alberts Award for Excellence in Science Education in 2006, and the college's Hunter-Hamilton Love of Teaching Award in 2008.

He received his B.S. from Davidson in 1984 and his Ph.D. from The Johns Hopkins University, and joined the Davidson faculty in 1994.

The Elizabeth W. Jones Award for Excellence in Education recognizes an individual or group that has had significant, sustained impact on genetics education. It was named posthumously in 2008 for Elizabeth W. Jones, a renowned geneticist and educator who served as GSA president, editor-in-chief of its journal GENETICS, and recipient of the first GSA Excellence in Education Award in 2007.

Campbell is one of five individuals honored by the GSA in recognition by their peers for outstanding achievements and contributions to the community of geneticists. They will receive their awards at GSA conferences during 2013.