Biology & Health Science at College of San Mateo - Meet the Faculty
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Biology & Health Science
Meet the Faculty

Tania Beliz, Professor of Biology Tania Beliz, Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 574-6248
Office: 36-205A
Email: beliz@smccd.edu
Office Hours

Website

Tania Beliz holds a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley. Her training as a biologist/naturalist started at an early age growing up at her grandparents' farm. Gardening, photography, nature walks, cooking, and reading murder mysteries are some of her hobbies.
Lin BowieLin Bowie
Office: 36-205B
Email: bowiel@smccd.edu

Lin Bowie was born in Birmingham, Alabama, but moved around the country during her school years. She fell in love with nature and biology at a young age, and decided to be a biologist at age nine. She obtained her B.A. in biology at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. Having spent her elementary school years in California, Lin returned to the University of California at Berkeley, where she earned her M.S. in range management from the School of Forestry. Lin emphasized ecology, natural resources, and plant biology, and developed an interest in gardening and floral design. Lin worked as a professional biologist and environmental scientist and consultant for 30 years for various public and private organizations. She worked for her last seven years as a senior project manager in charge of environmental permitting and compliance on construction projects in the Pacific Northwest. She remained in California since graduate school and raised her family in San Mateo County. Lin has been teaching at the College of San Mateo since 2002, but left private practice in 2007 to devote her career to teaching. Lin teaches biology, health science and horticulture. She enjoys gardening and floral design, and volunteers as a Master Gardener and Master Composter.
Michael Bucher, Professor of BiologyMichael Bucher, Professor of Biology, emeritus
Office: 36 - 205C
Email: bucher@smccd.edu

Beginning his studies in zoology at Santa Monica College in the town of his birth, Michael Bucher developed a taste for field rambles, tide-pooling and other less littoral-minded pursuits like limericks and doggerel, drove to Costa Rica to board a sailing ship for the Galapagos Archipelago before completing two degrees in zoology at UCLA, and has returned twice to Costa Rica: as a graduate student of tropical ecology and as a teacher in the CSM Study Abroad program. He enjoys foreign travel and languages, having spent three summers and a semester in Europe. Professor Bucher has taught for Seattle University, Santa Monica College, the Wilderness Foundation (in the shadow of the Grand Tetons and on Catalina Island), College of Notre Dame, as well as for College of San Mateo.
Kathy Diamond, Professor of Biology Kathy Diamond, Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 574-6602
Office: 36-205F
Email: diamondk@smccd.edu

Kathy Diamond was born in San Francisco. Starting college as an undeclared major torn between philosophy and French literature, she became overwhelmed by curiosity and completed a B.A. in Biology at U.C. Santa Cruz, an M.A. in Zoology at UCLA and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry at UCSF. She did research and lectured at UCLA until discovering the superior lower-division science education offered by community colleges. Kathy loves teaching CSM students, hiking, walking, gardening, movies, novels, family and friends. And chocolate.
Aneta Drazkiewicz, Assistant Professor of BiologyAneta Drazkiewicz, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone:
(650) 378-7301 ext.19173
Office: 36-205C
Email: drazkiewicza@smccd.edu

Aneta Drazkiewicz was born and raised in Warsaw, Poland. After graduating from High School, she moved to the United States. She enrolled at a community college where she completed General Education requirements which allowed her to transfer to California State University, Hayward where she pursued a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biological Sciences. During her stay at Hayward, Aneta became particularly interested in genetics. In order to study this subjects further, she enrolled at San Jose State University as a graduate student where she received a Master of Arts Degree in Molecular Biology and Microbiology. Aneta has been teaching various biology courses in junior colleges in Bay Area for the last three years. She enjoys reading, dancing, hiking, and an occasional good movie.
Ron Fark, Professor of Biology, emeritusRon Fark, Professor of Biology, emeritus
Office: 11-053
Email: fark@smccd.edu

Ron Fark has been teaching at College of San Mateo more than thirty years. He has a B.A., B.S., and M.A. from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. He retired in 2000 but continues to teach and enjoy students. Over the years he has shared his passion for nature and the environment with scores of students. He currently teaches Introductory Biology.
Krista Granieri, Assistant Professor of BiologyKrista Granieri , Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 378-7301 ext. 19212
Office: 36-205F
Email: granierik@smccd.edu
Office Hours

Krista Granieri teaches Biology at College of San Mateo, Ohlone College and College of Alameda. She was a student at College of San Mateo where she took two pivotal courses. One was general chemistry with Dr. Kowerski, where, after a few office-hour chats, she decided that she wanted to become a community college professor. And the second was zoology with Professor Bucher, where she decided she wanted to be a parasitologist. She transferred to UC Santa Cruz to complete her Bachelor's degrees in biology and anthropology. She received her Master's degree in Biology from Sonoma State University. Krista's areas of interest include Microbiology, Cell & Molecular Biology, Protein Biochemistry and Biotechnology.
Paul HankampPaul Hankamp
Office: 36-205A
Email: hankampp@smccd.edu

Paul Hankamp has a Master's degree in Biology with concentration in Ecology and Systematics from San Francisco State University. He specializes in botany and has spent recent years teaching students in the field, classroom and laboratory. At CSM, Paul teaches Biology, Botany, and Health Science, both online and on campus. He has passion for bringing active learning strategies into the classroom and motivation to share his enthusiasm with students.
Matt Leddy, Professor of Biology Matt Leddy, Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 574-6217
Office: 36-205C
Email: leddy@smccd.edu

Matt Leddy has enjoyed teaching at CSM since 1990 and has taught horticulture as well as biology. He enjoys hiking with his wife, dining out and kanikapila (getting together to play ukulele and eat) with friends.
Fern Lucero, Assistant Professor of BiologyFern Lucero, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 378-7301 ext.19122
Office: 36-205C
Email: lucero@smccd.edu

Fern Lucero was born & raised in a small town in Illinois. She has a B.A. & M.A. in Zoology and a Ph.D. in Microbiology all from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. She also received a Post Doctoral Fellowship in Virology at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas. She has taught at Southern Illinois University, University of North Dakota, University of California, San Francisco, Skyline College & College of San Mateo.  Presently she teaches Biology, Human Biology, and Health Science at CSM. She has two daughters and one son.  All are in the field of education. She enjoys reading, old movies and walking.
Ashok Malik, Assistant of BiologyIn Memorium, Ashok Malik, Assistant Professor of Biology

Ashok Malik grew up in India, a country of a billion people. He has a Bachelor's in Biology and Chemistry, two Master's in Botany and twenty units of graduate level course work in Biology from San Jose State. He taught Botany to undergraduates in India for almost sixteen years, moved to America in 1987, and since then has been teaching biology in various community colleges from CSM to Evergreen, Chabot to Mission. "I am everywhere like 'Visa.'" At present, he teaches Biology and Health Science at CSM. Ethnobotany (Plants and Culture) is his first love. And Prairie Home Companion (the radio program) is his passion.
Theresa Martin, Professor of BiologyTheresa Martin, Professor of Biology
Telephone:
(650) 574-6252
Office: 36 - 205B
Email: martin@smccd.edu
Office Hours
Website

Theresa Martin teaches Human Anatomy and Physiology. Her fascination with the human body began as a competitive runner and coach. She received Master's degrees in Exercise Science and Endocrinology from UC Davis and UC Berkeley, respectively. She enjoys working with students to prepare them for careers in allied health. In her free time she raises two young children and enjoys the outdoors.
Santiago PerezSantiago Perez
Office: 36 - 205E
Email: perezetchavarrias@smccd.edu

Santiago Perez was born and raised in Maracaibo, Venezuela and is of Uruguayan decent. He moved to the US to pursue a B.S. degree in Biology with an emphasis in Marine Biology from Florida Atlantic University as well as a Master of Science degree. He then received a Ph.D. degree from Oregon State University and is currently doing post-doctoral research at Stanford School of Medicine. Throughout his academic career, Santiago developed a strong passion for teaching and research. His research is focused on cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbioses, and in developing the sea anemone Aiptasia as a model system for such studies. He greatly enjoys teaching a wide range of biological topics including Human Anatomy and Physiology, Marine Animal Physiology and Invertebrate Zoology. Santiago's hobbies include SCUBA diving, piloting airplanes, playing guitar and the didgeridoo, grilling and home brewing (not all at the same time).
Lakshmikanta Sengupta, Ph.D.Lakshmikanta Sengupta, Ph.D.
Office: 36-205A
Email: senguptal@smccd.edu

He wants his students to leave his classes more "awake" than when they came in. He engages students using diverse active learning strategies [role playing, concept mapping, think-pair-share, case studies, storyboarding, poster sessions and presentations]. His main goal is to encourage independent and group thinking and analytical reasoning to augment their problem solving skills, thus encouraging them to not just memorize. The key is to relate to the audience by starting from what they know and building upon it. His favorite approach is: "If you don't have any question I have some for you". Sengupta's teaching areas include genetics, biotechnology, general biology, human biology and human anatomy and physiology. He has 32 publications in peer reviewed journals. He is currently active with CCB FEST [Community College Biology Faculty Enhancement through Scientific Teaching] - a NSF sponsored program for enhancing pedagogical expertise among community college biology instructors (CCBI) through scientific teaching. In addition to mentoring students, he likes nature, photography, walking, and gardening.
John Searle, Professor of Biology and Chemistry, emeritusJohn Searle, Professor of Biology and Chemistry, emeritus
Office: 36-305D
Email: searle@smccd.edu

John Searle arrived in California from the "old country" via 3 years of "postdocking" (research into natural products of lichen and fungi) in Canada, and a 3 year stint teaching at Western Washington State University. He has spent most of his CSM career splitting his teaching load 50:50 between biology and chemistry. John's present passion is in the area of molecular biology. In particular, he aims to interest students in the world of microbiology, and hopefully make a connection between it and the world of medicine and biotechnology. "I am confused as to whether I prefer mountain hiking or tandem cycling; I do know I enjoy a beer!"
Chris Smith, Assistant Professor of BiologyChristopher Smith, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone: 378-7301 ext. 19146
Office: 36-205B
Email: smithchris@smccd.edu

Christopher Smith's professional interests include microbiology, immunology and pharmacology.  He was raised in Massachusetts, where he attended Suffolk University in Boston and the University of Massachusetts earning first a B.S. and then an M.S. in Biology.  After earning a Ph.D. from the Biochemistry Department of the Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, he worked for several years as a research scientist in the pharmaceutical industry.  His approach to scientific education is that Science is just as much critical thinking as a collection of facts to memorize.  Chris hopes to bring his enthusiasm for scientific inquiry to the classroom.
Carlene Tonini-Boutacoff, Professor of BiologyCarlene Tonini-Boutacoff, Professor of Biology
Telephone:
(650) 574-6250
Office: 36-205D
Email: tonini@smccd.edu

Carlene Tonini's teaching areas include general biology for nonmajors and majors and human anatomy and physiology. For the past 35 years she has been very active in teaching and learning activities in the sciences. Her experience ranges from middle school science curriculum developer to many years in the community college scene including Napa College, Canada College and College of San Mateo. She has also been a content expert and contributor to a number of college biology textbooks, laboratory manuals and ancillaries. Her current project includes the Biology Curriculum Enhancement Project (BioCEPT), a National Science Foundation funded curriculum improvement project at the College of San Mateo. When not in the classroom or office, Professor Tonini can be found on the tennis courts or ski slopes and trails of the Sierras.
Huy Tran, Assistant of BiologyHuy Tran, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone:
(650) 574-6241
Office: 36-205E
Email: tranh@smccd.edu
Office Hours

Huy Tran was born in Vietnam and came to the United States in 1975. He grew up in southern California and spent much of his childhood in his backyard catching creep-crawly critters with his brothers. He received his Bachelor's of Science in Biology from the University of California, San Diego and his Master's of Science in Biology from California State University, Hayward (East Bay). When he's not making life difficult for his students in class you can usually find him hiking on one of the many trails in the greater Bay Area. Besides his love for anything science-related, Huy's other interests include photography, art, camping and distance running.
Wendy Whyte, Assistant Professor of BiologyWendy Whyte, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone:
(650) 378-7301 ext. 19425
Office: 36-205E
Email: whytew@smccd.edu


A former CSM student, "Dr. Wendy" is living proof there is life after Community College. Dr. Wendy went to College of San Mateo (Chemistry major) and transferred to UC Berkeley (Go Bears!).She has an A.B. in Biochemistry. Her M.S., Ph.D. is in Molecular Genetics from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx NY. Research experience includes metabolism of anticancer drugs and mechanisms of gamete formation. When she isn't teaching or prepping for classes, she volunteers for Foster City's Education Advisory Committee, hangs out with her family, and communes with the great outdoors by day hiking or skiing.
Shayne Zahedi, Assitant Professor of BiologyShaye Zahedi, Assistant Professor of Biology
Telephone: (650) 574-6240
Office: 36-205F
Email: zahedi@smccd.edu

Shaye Zahedi is an adjunct instructor of Biology at CSM.
She teaches health science.