Get in the Lab with Dr. Dawn Holliday

Watch the video above to learn more about Dr. Holliday’s research project at the University of Missouri.

Love science and lab work? Students have an opportunity for hands-on research with Dr. Dawn Holliday, working with cadavers at one of the very few undergraduate anatomy labs in the U.S., through a research project that received $250,000 funding in 2014, and internships.

Hands-on application of what students are learning makes a key difference in their achievement, according to Holliday. She says the most important part of her teaching is applying information to the real-world.

“It’s one thing to learn a whole bunch of facts and figures,” says Holliday. “But then to take that information and apply it – it not only helps you to remember it better as a student, it also makes it interesting and fun.”

Taking part in a grant-funded research team

Holliday has been working on a research project in conjunction with the University of Missouri to study the effect of BPA and estrogen on aquatic life. The video above shows the work she does with the team at MU. This research has been Professor Holliday’s interest since her first year in her Ph.D. program at Ohio University. While there, she studied the effects of a large oil spill in Maryland and has since been pursuing her observations of toxicology and turtles.

Dr. Holliday’s upper level class, Ecotoxicology and Chemistry, is offered every two years and relates directly to her research.

Learning anatomy through cadavers and more

Dr. Holliday also teaches two courses in Human Anatomy, giving her students the opportunity to work with actual Dawn-Holliday-pichuman cadavers. For students planning on medical school, this experience raises applicants’ competency level, giving them a competitive advantage. More on the cadaver program.

Students have the opportunity to join Dr. Holliday in her research through USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center internships. The internships are available for summer, spring, and fall and they are always looking for students. More information on internship opportunities at Westminster.

About Dr. Holliday

Dr. Holliday joined the Biology department at Westminster in the Fall of 2011. She earned her Environmental Forest Biology B.S. degree from SUNY ESF and went on to earn her masters degree from (Southwest) Missouri State University. She now holds a Ph.D. from Ohio University and this is where she cultivated a relationship with the US Geological Survey, which she is still involved with today.


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