Thursday, October 20, 2011
ROCHESTER, Minn. — L. James (Jim) Maher III, Ph.D., has been named the new dean of Mayo Graduate School. He succeeds Diane F. Jelinek, Ph.D., who since 2003 has served as the school's fourth dean. Dr. Maher assumed his responsibilities effective Sept. 1, 2011.
In his new role, Dr. Maher will spearhead the development and apprenticeship training of Mayo Graduate School's predoctoral, master's, summer undergraduate research fellow (SURF), and visiting graduate students. Dr. Maher has been a strong advocate for student diversity and has mentored numerous young investigators throughout his career. He is committed to advancing the scientific skills of the Ph.D. scientist trainees through innovative biomedical research and educational programs.
Dr. Maher has been involved in graduate education for 20 years and brings an impressive list of credentials to the position. He earned B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in molecular biology from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and completed three years of postdoctoral training at the California Institute of Technology. After training, Dr. Maher was an assistant professor at the Eppley Institute for Research in Cancer and Allied Diseases at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.
Dr. Maher joined the Mayo Clinic staff in 1995 and is a consultant researcher and vice chair in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He is a professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, and also serves as director of Mayo Graduate School's federally-funded Initiative to Maximize Student Development (IMSD) and Post-Baccalaureate Research Education Program (PREP).
His current research is funded by national and regional grants and focuses on the properties of DNA and RNA molecules, and how these molecules might be used for future drugs. His laboratory also studies the biochemistry of certain unusual cancers.
Mayo Graduate School became an independent degree-granting entity in 1989, with the mission to train future leaders in biomedical research and education. Since 1917, Mayo Graduate School has awarded more than 600 Ph.D. and 3,000 master's degrees.
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