February 01, 2012
H-SC Professor Rachel Goodman received a $20,000 grant from the Thomas F. Jeffress and Kate Miller Jeffress Memorial Trust to investigate the interaction between an emerging virus infection and chronic environmental stressors, specifically chemical pollutants, in a population of locally-available reptiles (specifically, freshwater turtles). Dr. Goodman has extensive experience working with different populations of reptiles, including turtles, snakes, and lizards. In 2011, she presented a paper at the meetings of the Virginia Herpetological Society, reporting on a study of the particular virus; that study also was done in collaboration with one of her students, Yonathan Ararso, who continues to work with her on other research projects. She has been especially successful in involving students in her research efforts, clearly reinforcing her role in supporting the teacher-scholar model encouraged by Hampden-Sydney College for its faculty. Dr. Goodman will also continue her collaboration on this research with Dr. Debra L. Miller of the Center for Wildlife Health at the University of Tennessee.
Dr. Goodman joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the Department of Biology in the fall of 2009, and serves as the resident environmental biologist and a key person in our Environmental Studies program.
The Thomas F. Jeffress and Kate Miller Jeffress Memorial Trust was established under the will of Mr. Robert M. Jeffress, a business executive and philanthropist of Richmond. The Jeffress Trust assist scientists at institutions of higher education in Virginia conduct basic research in the natural sciences, medical sciences, or other scientific fields.