Biology Advising

Choosing an Advisor in Biology

Choosing the right advisor and meeting with him/her regularly can enhance your ability to succeed academically and put you on the right track when it comes to graduation! When you first declare your interest in a degree program in Biology (B.S. or A.S.) or in a minor in Biology, an advisor in the Biology Department will be assigned to you. However, as you proceed through your academic career, you are free to choose any of the advisors in the Department.

Biology Advisors and their Specialties

Dr. Margot Becktell

As a plant pathologist, Dr. Becktell enjoys working with students interested in pursuing careers and/or graduate work in botany, horticulture, and plant pathology. She also works with students who are interested in getting a minor in Biology. Dr. Becktell can be reached at mbecktel@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. George Gromke

As a D.O. (Doctor of Osteopathy), advises students who are interested in pursuing human health professions. He works with pre-medical students, pre-dental students, and pre-pharmacy students as well as students who plan on entering physical therapy programs and physician assistant schools upon graduating from CMU. Dr. Gromke can be reached at ggromke@coloradomesa.edu.

Dr. Paul Hampton

Dr. Hampton enjoys advising students who are interested in herpetology and vertebrate physiology. He also enjoys working with students who want to pursue graduate school. Dr. Hampton can be reached at pahampton@coloradomesa.edu.

Dr. Eriek Hansen

Dr. Hansen works with students whose interests are in Fish and Wildlife, Aquatic Ecology, and Natural Resource Management. He also works with students who are interested in pursuing graduate school. Dr. Hansen can be reached at erihansen@coloradomesa.edu.  

Dr. Denise McKenney

Dr. McKenney advises students who are interested in entering the Teaching Program and those interested in careers in Microbiology, Biotechnology, and Cell and Molecular Biology.  She also enjoys working with students interested in attending graduate school in Biology. Dr. McKenney can be reached at dmckenne@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Kyle McQuade

Dr. McQuade works with students who are interested in professions involving Cell and Molecular Biology. He also advises students interested in going to graduate school in Cell and Molecular Biology or a related field. Dr. McQuade can be reached at kmcquade@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Carrie McVean

As the Department Head of Biology, Dr. McVean Waring is available on a very limited basis to work with students wanting to enter vet school upon graduation. She also advises students that are interested in pursuing careers in the Health Sciences, again on a very limited basis due to her position as Department Head. Dr. McVean can be reached at cmcvean@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Zeynep Ozsoy

Dr. Ozsoy enjoys working with students who are interested in pursuing careers in Cell and Molecular Biology.  She also advises students who plan on going to graduate school in Cell and Molecular Biology or a related field. Dr. Ozsoy can be reached at aozsoy@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Aparna Palmer

Because Dr. Palmer is now the Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs for Student and Faculty Success, she will not be able to be an academic advisor in Biology. However, if you were one of her former advisees or students and would like to meet with her to discuss your career goals informally, Dr. Palmer can be reached at aparna@coloradomesa.edu.

Dr. Stephen Stern

As a plant molecular systematist, Dr. Stern advises students who are interested in careers involving Botany as well as students who are interested in pursuing Graduate School in Biology, Botany, and Systematics. Dr. Stern can be reached as sstern@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Johanna Varner

Dr. Varner advises students who are interested in careers in mammalogy and ecology. She also works with students who are planning to enter graduate school in Biology or a related field. Dr. Varner can be reached at jvarner@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Thomas Walla

Dr. Walla advises students who are interested in careers in ecology and tropical biology. He also works with students who are planning to enter graduate school in Biology or a related field. Dr. Walla can be reached at twalla@coloradomesa.edu

Dr. Steve Werman

As a herpetologist who specializes in molecular systematics, Dr. Werman advises students who are interested in careers involving herpetology and vertebrate zoology.  He also enjoys working with students who are interested in pursuing graduate school in Biology. Dr. Werman can be reached at swerman@coloradomesa.edu

Contacting the Biology Department

If you are interested in finding out more about the advisors in the Department, please contact Ms. Julie Fredlund in the Biology/PES office at 970.248.1993.  The Biology/PES Office is located in the Wubben Science Building, on the second floor, next to the elevator (WS 232).

Additional Advice for Biology Students

In addition to consulting with your advisor, Dr. Tom Walla has prepared an advising document that can be accessed here.  The document, Advice for Biology Students, updates you on recent developments in the Biology Department and suggests ways in which you can enhance your success as you work through your degree program.