Resource Center for Math and Science
Molly K. Smith, PhD
Director of the Science Center for Women
Interim Coordinator, Resource Center for Math & Science
I joined Agnes Scott as Coordinator for the Resource Center for Math and Science in September 2011 and have truly been enjoying this wonderful community ever since. My position was created with the support of a grant from the Teagle Foundation that the College received in February 2011, entitled “Influential Interventions: Improving Student Learning in Math and Science” (read more about the grant here), and I work closely with our learning assistants, tutors and faculty to develop programs that help our students succeed in their math and science courses. This has been a welcome and significant career change for me, as I was previously employed as a Research Scientist at Kimberly-Clark Corporation, where I developed technologies for new products. During my six years there I worked on interesting projects, gained many skills, met great people and grew as a professional. However, I also came to realize that I wanted to get back to the academic environment I so enjoyed and work with students to help them realize their goals.
I received a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, also in Chemical Engineering, although my research was more aligned with the field of Biomedical Engineering. During graduate school, I worked with the University’s Center for Research on Learning and Teaching for several years, serving as a mentor for graduate teaching assistants. In this role, I helped to train TAs in working effectively with students during a 2-day orientation at the start of each semester, and then supported a group of 20-30 TAs in the College of Engineering throughout the semester. It was one of my favorite experiences, so I am excited to be here at Agnes Scott in a similar role once again. This is a job that allows me to combine my interest in teaching and learning, my experience in supporting students in a teaching/tutoring role, and my passion for helping women students interested in STEM fields to see that (1) they can succeed in their STEM courses (even if it might be a struggle at first!) and (2) an undergraduate STEM degree opens a huge world of diverse career possibilities.
Please drop by and visit me in BSC 108 I would be happy to talk with you about the support we offer through the Resource Center for Math and Science. If you are interested, I would also be happy to share more about my experiences working in industry, going to grad school, doing research as an undergraduate, and almost anything else you are curious about!