Gary Skuse

Gary Skuse

Professor of Biological Sciences, Rochester Institute of Technology

Dr. Skuse has taught more than 60 distinct courses at the undergraduate, graduate, and medical school levels; in addition, he was responsible for designing, implementing and fostering the development of BS, MS, and BS/MS programs in Bioinformatics. Throughout his experiences with those programs he was responsible for coordinating interdisciplinary teaching and research collaborations within of his institution. His work on the proposed project will facilitate its incorporation into the Bioinformatics and Environmental Science curricula at RIT.

Dr. Gary Skuse will identify up to 20 students annually who will participate in this project by collecting soil samples from various regions throughout Western New York.  He teaches BIOL 389, a flexible Directed Research in Bioinformatics course annually that will serve as the forum for this work.  Initially, students at different educational levels will be recruited so that more senior students can mentor their junior counterparts.  This intrinsic peer mentoring component will not only foster a sense of community among participating students but it will validate the knowledge and skills of the senior students.  After year one, 4 students will be asked to remain in the program each year to serve as peer mentors for students new to the program.  The overall goal of this approach is to create a community of student-scholars who have experience conducting authentic research including applying quantitative reasoning to analyze data and developing the communication skills needed to disseminate their findings.

Each year one graduate student from the MS program in Bioinformatics will be recruited to assist the undergraduate research students in the analysis of their data.  It is very likely that the interactions between undergraduate students in our Environmental Science program, who are sensitive to environmental issues but do not necessarily, have strong quantitative skills, and Bioinformatics students, who are strong quantitatively but not necessarily sensitive to environmental issues, will be mutually beneficial.  Students in both programs will emerge better prepared to enter the workforce or to continue their education at the graduate level.


Contact information

3129 Center for Bioscience Education and Technology
RIT College of Science
153 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623

Office Location: CBT 75-3129
Office Phone: 585.475.6725

Recent publications

  • Skuse, G.R. and Ferran, M.C. eds. (2015) Methods in Molecular Biology (vol 1299): Cardiomyocytes Methods and Protocols, Humana Press, NY, NY.
  • Skuse, G.R. and Berger, A.M. (2015) Justice as Fairness: Forensic Implications of DNA and Privacy. The Champion.
  • Newman, D.L., Skuse, Gary R., Carter, D., Pough, F.H. and Wright, L.K. (2013) Lessons learned from the first year implementation of a two-track, reformed introductory biology course. Proceedings of the 2013 NABT Biology Education Resarch Symposium.
  • Skuse, G.R. and Lamkin-Kennard, K. A. (2013) Reverse engineering life: physical and chemical mimetics for controlled stem cell differentiation into cardiomyocytes. In Organ Regeneration: Methods and Protocols (Methods in Molecular Biology, vol 1001), pp 99-114 (J. Basu and J.W. Ludlow eds.). Humana Press. NY, NY.

Participating Institutions