Bauerle settles in as new science and math dean at JMU

james madison university jmuExpanding opportunities for undergraduates to participate in research is a goal of Dr. Cynthia Bauerle, the new dean of the College of Science and Mathematics at JMU.

Bauerle began her duties July 1, following the retirement of Dr. David Brakke, who had led the college since 1999. She came to JMU from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Chevy Chase, Maryland, where she had worked for the past seven years.

“I think we have a lot of information now to help us understand that the very best way to educate students in science is to have them do science,” said Bauerle, a molecular biologist who received her undergraduate degree at the University of Virginia and her doctorate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Bauerle said JMU, like many universities, faces challenges in using spaces and resources as it tries to increase the numbers of students in research. But she also said the innovative approaches JMU faculty are taking to meet the challenges was among the reasons she applied for the position.

“One of the reasons I was so interested in JMU in particular was because it’s not a matter of how do we get started? It’s a matter of really thinking about how do we move forward?”

Bauerle said engaging students in research is a great way to invite students into STEM departments and build a community where all students, including those from underrepresented groups, can feel included in the discovery of new knowledge.

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