Newsmaker: Lauren A. O'Donnell
Noteworthy: O'Donnell was named Teacher of the Year at Duquesne University in a competition sponsored by the university's Omicron Kappa National Leadership Honor Society. Students cited her accessibility and willingness to listen to their ideas and suggestions.
Residence: Squirrel Hill
Background: A member of the faculty at Duquesne University's Mylan School of Pharmacy since 2010, O'Donnell's research focuses on the effects of infections in the brain, particularly how viruses can alter brain development in newborns. She teaches courses at the pharmacy school on infectious diseases, and a course for graduate students on how to write about their scientific work for different audiences, including fellow scientists, scientists in other fields and the general public.
Education: Bachelor's degree in agriculture, University of Delaware, 2000; Ph.D. in cellular and molecular biology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 2006.
Quote: “One of the greatest tasks we have as scientists is helping the general public understand the importance of our research and its applications.”