John Pilger, Educational Council Chair
Before I begin with new business, let me say "thank you" to the outgoing
chair, Sue Cook. Sues dedicated service to the council through difficult
circumstances is truly appreciated. Under her leadership the council has sponsored several
workshops on educational issues and the Careers in Biology brochure has been
reincarnated into a 90s format.
As your new chair my first duty was to find four new council members to fill vacancies.
Thus, in addition to myself, the members of the Educational Council are Mimi Bres, Jay
Labov, Linda Mantel, Wendy Ryan and David Towle. I thank the new and returning members for
their willingness to serve and look forward to working with them.
At the Educational Council business meeting in Boston we hosted several visitors from
Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL). Through workshops and seminars, PKAL strives to revitalize
undergraduate science education. They do this by helping to improve introductory courses,
encouraging a research-rich environment, providing information to help improve science
facilities, and by validating curricula through program reviews. Several PKAL faculty for
the 21st century who are also SICB members attended our business meeting to discuss ways
that we might conjoin our efforts. We agreed to sponsor a workshop at the Denver meeting
that would host a plenary speaker and then focus on related educational topics. To avoid
conflicts with attendance at professional presentations we intend to meet during the
afternoon prior to the beginning of the SICB meeting. Watch for details of this in the
SICB Fall newsletter.
Several years ago the Educational Council produced a brochure titled Careers in
Animal Biology. It was directed to high school students who may be considering a
career in biology. Under the leadership of SICB president Alan Kohn and Educational
Council chair Sue Cook, an effort to update the brochure was initiated. Coordinated and
managed by Nina Caris, this brochure is nearing completion. This information will be added
to the SICB web page and made available in printed format for those who request it.
To enrich the Educational Council page of the SICB web site, we would like to include a
resource page that would provide live links to educationally-based web resources for
educators. Please send me your favorite URLs (maybe even your own page) with a short
sentence or two describing the content and academic or pedagogical value of the site.
Well collate them and get them on our page. My e-mail is: jpilger@ness.AgnesScott.edu.
In order to understand our constituency and to better meet your pedagogical needs, we
intend to send a member survey to all SICB members in the Fall newsletter. We will
appreciate your thoughtful responses.
We wish to encourage oral or poster presentations of education-related topics at the
SICB Annual Meetings. Therefore, I want to emphasize the fact that the presentation of an
educationally-focused paper will not preclude presentation of a paper on your biological
research at the same meeting. Educational papers may be grouped together into a single
session, if warranted, or they may be presented as part of the Division of Integrative and