This archived article was written by: Keenan Ryan
With a new school year, CEU has had many changes. The new Reeves Building is complete and functioning as new classroom space. Though the building is new, the students also see new faculty and staff in its hallways.
Shelby L. Caldwell is one of the new faculty and works in the biology department. Caldwell is teaching microbiology, biology, genetics, and heredity. She is in her third year teaching and has previously taught at Pittsburg State University and the University of Wisconsin. Caldwell graduated from Weber State University with a major in microbiology and a minor in chemistry. In 1999 she received her Ph.D. from Utah State University in nutrition and food sciences with an emphasis in food microbiology.
She was lured to teaching at CEU because, “I was attracted by the small community. From the moment I drove into Price, I could sense that hometown feeling. I also wanted to be closer to my family. I think that the new building is going to function very well, I’m still trying to get organized but it will work well.”
Throughout her education, she received numerous awards and honors such as, Graduate Research Assistant of the Year by the College of Agriculture (USU), awarded the three-year Niranjan R. Gandhi and Mrs. Josephine N. Gandhi Ph.D. Fellowship from the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, USU.
Caldwell has had an extensive background in teaching experience. Microbial physiology was a course developed as a senior/graduate level course at the University of Wisconsin. It is taught once a year at PSU and is basically a metabolic biochemistry course with an emphasis on Prokaryotes.
The microbiology course is required for all biology and nursing majors. Caldwell has taught industrial microbiology, developed in the spring of 2002 at PSU. The lecture portion of the course looked at the uses of microorganisms in industrial processes including the production of antibiotics, chemicals, and the use of organisms for bioremediation.
She developed a lecture course at PSU concerning food microbiology, 2002. “This course explored among other topics, the interactions of microorganisms with the food supply both from the production and spoilage standpoints and food borne disease causes and prevention. At the student’s request, we also conducted a laboratory exercise to produce sauerkraut and follow the microbial succession the occurred during the fermentation,” she said.
Some of her goals of teaching at CEU include, “This year I would like to start some student-research projects. I have some connections with other professors at USU who can help also.”
“As a microbiologist I enjoy doing lab work in genetics. Modifying bacteria really interests me, it’s frustrating but I enjoy seeing the results. It’s always fun doing lab work on DNA transformation to bacteria where the students actually see the growth on their plate.”
She enjoys the teaching field. ” I love science. I like to see students understand it. Whether it’s the big smile they get when they finally get it or if it’s a better understanding of science at the end of the semester, it’s worth it.”