I’m about to start as a biology instructor in the Life Sciences Department within the Division of Math and Sciences. I will mostly be teaching human anatomy & physiology (“A&P,” to insiders) to health sciences students such as pre-nursing students.
Tell us a little about your professional background.
I’m coming to Everett after 22 years spent mostly at the Bothell and Seattle campuses of the University of Washington. I had a variety of roles there as a graduate student, postdoc, and faculty member, ranging from teaching biology-for-engineers courses to performing lab research on the development of new malaria drugs.
What was your most memorable job? Why?
As a graduate student studying human muscle metabolism, I worked in a UW lab that also studied the tail-shaker muscles of Western diamondback rattlesnakes. Though I never experimented on them myself, and though they were always well-contained, they added a bit of drama to lab tours.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Ask me again once I get to campus! (I don’t officially start until January.) But most days should include an hour or two of lecture, a couple hours of lab, an office hour, and a bunch of prep time. Then I might go home, cook dinner, and try to be a competent father and husband for a couple of hours.
Describe yourself at 12 years old.
Among other features, I was:
(a) a fairly serious long-distance runner and
(b) rather short and skinny, with a still-high voice. These tidbits tend to come up in class when we’re discussing the A&P of exercise and the A&P of puberty, though I try not to over-share.
What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?
I love fried chicken, especially the slow-twitch muscles (known to most people as “dark meat”), washed down with iced tea in early fall or hot tea in late fall.
What would be the title of your autobiography?
To be honest, writing a book-length summary of my life would be a poor use of my time.
What is the first concert you attended?
The first big-name artist I ever saw live was New Kids on the Block, circa 1990. I swear it was my younger sister’s idea.
What is your favorite hobby or pastime?
Believe it or not, I write lots of little songs about A&P material to help teach this material to my students. I often write song lyrics while running, thus combining two hobbies into one.
What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
I recently read “The Core Concepts of Physiology” by Joel Michael and colleagues, which is a nice little book about how to help students learn the big ideas rather than making them memorize endless facts. I also just listened to an audiobook of “The Circle” by Dave Eggers, which may have been too satirical for my taste. I preferred the movie, in which the characters were more realistic.
What one food do you wish had zero calories?
I consume an alarming amount of peanut butter, so maybe that.
Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
I grew up in Rutland, Vermont until hopping across the state border for undergraduate studies at Williams College in Massachusetts.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Probably still in Shuksan 118. Is this a trick question?
What do you like to do on your days off?
I have two sons, one who is nearly 11 years old and one who is only 7 months old, so I can usually be found with them and my wife. We try to get out and do stuff, but sometimes the highlight of my weekend is a long nap.
Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
As someone whose main teaching topic is the human body, I try to advocate for healthy habits such as regular exercise. When people hear that I run a lot, they often say, with a guilty sigh, “Yeah, I should really run more….” To which I generally respond, “No! If you don’t enjoy running, find another physical activity that you actually like, and do that!”