Lynnette Kuervers, BSc, PhD 

I have a PhD in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry from Simon Fraser University where I studied under David Baillie, Canada’s first Research Chair in Genomics and former graduate student of David Suzuki. During my PhD I used C. elegans, a small soil nematode, to look at the distribution of essential genes within the genome as well as studied a gene involved in organizing chromosomes in eggs and sperm. After receiving my doctorate, I completed a two year postdoc at the Stanford University School of Medicine in the Department of Developmental Genetics under the supervision of William Talbot where I studied the genetics of stroke recovery using zebrafish as a model organism. I am intrigued by the use of metagenomic tools in mining, environmental science, and disease. I also have a great interest in personalized genome testing and the ethics involved in genomics.

I was an interim Chair of the Research Ethics Board. In this role, I reviewed research applications involving human subjects. My role was to determine whether they fit the ethical criteria required by the Tri-Council Agency of Canada. I would often consult with board members on applications to determine whether changes were required for the research ethics applications to fit ethical criteria. I also served on the Awards Committee which is a committee comprised of volunteers that allocate awards to various applicants.

I believe that students benefit from applying the information given in a course to topics that they may encounter in the real world. I have structured my classroom so that we focus on case studies and examples from the scientific literature which is paired with smaller mini-lectures. During class students may learn a new technique or they may work together to solve real world problems. I believe this helps keep students engaged, appreciate the material more, make connections to their world, and increase their understanding of the content.

I have designed my courses using the principles of Universal Design for Learning. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that is used to help reduce barriers that many learners might encounter in their educational journey. I have designed the courses that I teach using UDL as a guideline with the intention of increasing the accessibility for a variety of learning styles, especially in a digital age. I am committed to help all students navigate through this less traditional style of teaching while maintaining my standards of delivering a high caliber course.