June 27, 2022

Wynn Named Faculty Director of the First Year Experience

Dr. April Wynn has accepted the position of Faculty Director of the First Year Experience.  Dr. Wynn is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and the MWCF Herbarium Coordinator, having joined the UMW faculty in 2015.  She is the chair of the First-Year Seminar Committee and serves as a Faculty Fellow in the Office of Academic Services.

Dr. April Wynn was named Faculty Director of the First Year Experience at the University of Mary Washington.

Dr. April Wynn was named Faculty Director of the First Year Experience.

She received her Ph.D. in Genetics from North Carolina State University (2013) and has an M.S. in Student Affairs Administration in Higher Education from Texas A&M University (2006), and a B.S. in Natural Science from McMurry University (2004). Previously, she served as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Biology at St. Mary’s College of Maryland.

Dr. Wynn’s passion for working with First-Year students has been a consistent thread throughout her career and professional development. Prior to her graduate work in genetics, she served as a first-year student Resident Hall Director at Boston College, where she oversaw the Honors Living Learning Community. Preceding that, she oversaw the Peer Diversity Educators and trained and supervised Resident Assistants at Texas A&M University.

In this position, Dr. Wynn will work closely with the faculty, deans, and department chairs, as well as the Offices of Residence Life, Academic Services, Orientation, and Student Involvement as UMW strives to institutionalize and sustain elements of the Quality Enhancement Plan, and further develop the experiences of our first-year students.


Wynn Publishes Work on Student Misconceptions about Plants

Assistant Professor of Biology April Wynn and colleagues had a recent paper published in the Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education. The paper is a meta-analysis of the misconceptions that students of all levels hold about plants biology. The goal of this work is to be a resource for instructors to identify misconceptions in order to focus on enriching the education in these areas of plant biology.



Biology Professors Present at National Conference

Deborah O’Dell and April Wynn presented a poster titled “Transforming the Biology Major Through Course Based Research” at the AAC&U/PKAL meeting “Transforming Undergraduate STEM Education” held Nov. 4-5 in Boston. The poster was co-authored by O’Dell and Wynn and Biology Professors Andrew Dolby, Lynn Lewis, Alan Griffith and Deborah Zies. The presentation described changes in the biology major that ensure that every biology student participates in authentic research before they graduate.