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Archives: August, 2012

In the Spotlight: Linda Martin-Morris


Dr. Martin-Morris

At first glance, it would have been easy to mistake Dr. Linda Martin-Morris’ neuropharmacology class for a drama or English course.

After all, it’s not every day that a biology teacher works skits and magazine publishing into the syllabus.

But outside-the-box assignments helped make Dr. Martin-Morris a well-regarded lecturer with the thousands of students she’s led since joining the UW in 1994. Not just that, but Dr. Martin-Morris’ friendly demeanor and passion for science led one UWAA member to nominate her for a feature in this space.

Dr. Martin-Morris’ projects and emphasis on team learning in Biology 100 helped students from other majors understand–and enjoy–the brainier side of biology and how drug use impacts neurological functions. “I’ve got drama people in the class, and I’ve got artists in the class,” Dr. Martin-Morris said. “I wanted to make assignments that honor the various skills they bring to the table, not just research and writing skills.”

The long-running class was shelved after the winter 2009 term, despite a student-driven petition to keep the course going. “What my students lost—and what my future students lost—is the opportunity to take a course that was relevant to their world,” Dr. Martin-Morris said. She currently teaches courses on cellular and molecular biology, and how to teach biology.

The spirit of the class lives on. Dr. Martin-Morris, a senior lecturer who will on Sept. 16 be promoted to principal lecturer, is in the third year of a four-year grant project funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

The grant enables Dr. Martin-Morris to train 18 high school teachers around the state as part of the UW in the High School program, which allows high school students to earn UW credit. She led the latest workshop in early August, and is excited that the lessons are finding new audiences. “I refer to this grant project as ‘Bio 100 goes worldwide,’” she said. “There’s a rebirth.”

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Is Your Junior Dawg Heading Back to School?

School Bus

Starting routines early can help your child get off on the right foot

Sure, mid-August might seem a little early to start thinking about school, but getting started now can help kids ease into the new routine.

Going back to school can be a lot of fun—catching up with old friends, making new ones, meeting new teachers—but it can also be a big source of anxiety for kids. Liliana Lengua, UW psychology professor, and Clayton Cook, UW assistant professor of educational psychology, have some tips for helping your kids succeed at the first day of school.

Prof. Lengua runs the Center for Child and Family Well-Being, which is now offering a certificate program in Early Childhood Leadership for early childhood care professionals. She recommends arranging a few get-togethers with school friends before classes start, and maybe a classroom tour, if your child is feeling nervous. “Sometimes it’s the unfamiliarity or unknown that worries kids,” says Lengua, so giving your child some exposure to the people and places she’ll be interacting with ahead of time can be a help.

Is someone in your household heading for classes this fall? Are you? What are you doing to get prepared?

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Go Purple, Win Gold: Huskies at the 2012 Olympics—Around the World

Athletes come from all over the world to train with and compete for the UW. This year, four countries are represented among the 19 Olympians currently striving for the gold in London. Let’s meet some of our further-flung Dawgs!

Ingvill Måkestad Bovim, ’04, Norway

Ingvill Makstadt Bovim

Ingvill Måkestad Bovim

When Norwegian track star Ingvill Måkestad Bovim lines up in the 1500m semifinals on Monday, it will be the culmination of 15 years of hard work and rigorous training. Måkestad Bovim, a native of Odda, Norway, raced onto the scene at the 1997 Under-20 European Championships, where she took fourth place; she would repeat that feat again in 1999. Måkestad Bovim arrived in 2003 at the UW, where she was one of five new Huskies to compete at the NCAA Championships. Since graduating, Måkestad Bovim has raced for Norway at the 2010 and 2012 European Championships, as well as the 2011 World Championships. She is making her Olympics debut in London, where she is competing in the women’s 1500m race on Aug. 6.

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Go Purple, Win Gold: Huskies at the 2012 Olympics—Rowing for Canada

Just this morning, the Canadian men’s eight took the silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Three Huskies were in the boat. Let’s meet them now!

Rob Gibson, Canada, ’09, Rowing

Rob Gibson

Rob Giblson, ’09, Canada, Rowing

Rob Gibson got his first taste of Olympic success in 2008, when, while still a UW undergrad,  he was a spare on the Canadian rowing team that won gold in Beijing. But the 2009 graduate is no one’s alternate this summer: Gibson, along with fellow Huskies Conlin McCabe and Will Crothers, took the silver medal as part of the Canadian men’s eight rowing team in London. While at UW, Gibson, along with Crothers, helped power the Huskies to national championships in 2007 and 2009. The Kingston, Ontario, native rowed as a junior with the undefeated varsity team that won gold medals at the Pac-10 Championships and the 2007 Intercollegiate Rowing Association Regatta. Citing the legacy of crew victories, the strong academics at Washington, the generally mild temperatures allowing for year-round rowing on multiple bodies of water, Gibson told the UW Daily, “Rowing at Washington really is the ideal location for a Canadian rower looking to take the next step.

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