As a department, we have two main goals: (1) exploring novel research and (2) sharing with students our fascination and knowledge of dynamic disciplines in microbiology, including bacteriology, epidemiology, fungal biology, immunology, molecular biology, parasitology, and virology. We work to achieve excellence in these areas by creating a student-centered environment that values diversity and encourages discovery, ingenuity, integrity, and collegiality.

All the Places You'll Go

The MICR 354 Scientific Writing students have taken over the homepage for the fall semester. Stay tuned as they profile alumni and share fun, inspiring, micro-related videos. For now, catch up with...

Chantal Nde, '07 Ph.D. (Food Safety)

Dr. Nde came to NDSU after completing her undergraduate studies at the University of Buea in Cameroon. Her doctorate work was funded by a USDA grant and focused on risk analysis of Salmonella in turkeys. Dr. Catherine Logue (currently a professor of vet microbiology and preventive medicine at Iowa State University) advised her through this project and is still her mentor in life. Chantal currently serves as a Senior Scientist in the Microbiology and Food Safety department of Kraft Foods in Chicago. She loves Zumba and yoga, and she'll travel anywhere she can get a ticket. Her scientific idol is Rosalind Franklin, for her key role in discovering the double helical nature of DNA, and her advice to aspiring microbiologists is to "go out into the field and find out what you like."

By Michael Mann

Julie Wagendorf, B.S. (Microbiology and Medical Technology), M.S. (Microbiology)

Julie chose microbiology as a career path because she found the professors in VMS to be inspiring. She worked in the media room and as a teaching assistant for some lab courses, which only reinforced her interest in the field. She credits these experiences with helping her find a job after graduation. Julie earned an associate's degree in Computer Science and Database Management from Bismarck State College after graduating NDSU, and she currently works for the ND Department of Health.

By Sara Bowman

Read more from Sara's interview with Julie here.

Aaron Lynne, ’00 B.S. (Microbiology) and ’06 Ph.D. (Molecular Pathogenesis)

Dr. Lynne is currently an Assistant Professor and researcher at Sam Houston State University.He studies how the “microbiome associated with human cadavers changes over time while a body decomposes and if this is useful in determining the postmortem interval”…aka he combined Microbial Ecology and Crime to find a niche in forensic science. Aaron is proof that one can do anything with a Microbiology degree.

By Emma Kusick

Read more from Emma's interview with Aaron here.

Alumni Profiles Archive

The Micro Highlight Reel

By Thai Dong

Dr. Nathan Wolfe, an American virologist, and his colleagues are working to build a global monitoring system to identify and control viral diseases before they emerge. He works with local villagers and scientists from viral hot spots around the world where people are at high risk for exposure to wild animals that may be infected with viruses that can be transmitted to humans. Globalization favors the spread of disease; therefore, reacting to and trying to control emerging diseases won’t be easy. Wolfe’s strategy is to find and study the viruses before they find us.

By Autumn Kraft

Waste, which is produced by cities at massive rates, piles up in landfills and goes nowhere...very slowly. Items like plastics and metals can be toxic to some environments, and plastics, specifically, are everywhere, not easily sorted, and take tens of thousands of years to decompose. However, the two young women in this video discuss an interesting method they have investigated at the University of British Columbia. After witnessing large amounts of plastics piling up in waste facilities, they were interested in researching how they could solve this issue. They found that some locally harvested
bacteria can be utilized to breakdown phthalates, harmful plasticizers. While they were not the first to discover this method, they hoped to solve their local problem by using bacteria found in the rivers near their city. Their discussion in this video is an interesting look at how little mistakes here and there can lead to accidental findings that help the investigation. It is also inspiring to see high-school-aged students being so involved in research while looking to solve a concerning problem.