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Wassarman Chosen as CALS Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 05/15/2018

A long-time bacteriology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has been named the new associate dean for academic affairs for the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. Karen Wassarman will be responsible for guiding the school's student services and academic programs, including undergraduate majors, Farm and Industry Short Course, continuing education and international student activities.

Wassarman has been a faculty member in the Department of Bacteriology for over 16 years, where she has maintained a highly successful research program.

"Karen brings valuable experiences in the classroom and the laboratory to this leadership position at a time when how we educate students continues to change swiftly," said CALS Dean Kate VandenBosch. "Her experience will be valuable as the college considers how to best meet the needs of our students into the future."

Wassarman earned her bachelor's degree in biology and chemistry from Williams College, and her Ph.D. in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University. She held postdoctoral positions at University of California at San Francisco and at the National Institutes of Health. In the lab, her 's research program utilizes molecular, biochemical and genetic approaches to study bacterial small RNAs and how they function. She is also responsible for teaching Microbiology 470: Microbial Genetics and Molecular Machines.

Karen is currently serving as co-chair of the university's biology major and director of the bacteriology department's master's degree program. She has also served on the CALS Academic Planning Council for more than six years.

The associate dean of academic affairs provides leadership for the CALS Office of Academic Affairs, which oversees academic program development and assessment, student advising and student recruitment with approximately 25 staff.

Wassarman begins her new role on June 1.

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