Biology and Environmental Health

Biology Faculty

Jennifer Dennis, Department Head

Jennifer Dennis

Education: B.A., University of Missouri - Kansas City; M.S., University of Arizona; Ph.D., University of Kansas
Teaching Responsibilities:  Oral Histology & Embryology, Human Anatomy, Human Anatomy and Physiology, General Biology
Specialties/Research Interests:  Embryology, developmental biology, craniofacial development, congenital birth defects
Advising Areas: Pre-Medicine, Pre-Physician Assistant, Pre-Dental
Personal Interests:  Running, ballet, cooking, college and professional football, Jayhawk basketball.  Having fun with my husband and son!
Contact: RH 215, 417-625-3569,

Teresa Boman

Teresa Boman photo Education: Arkansas State University, Environmental Sciences, Ph.D.
Teaching Responsibilities:   General Biology, Principles of Biology I and II, Aquatic Ecology
Specialties/Research Interests:   Water quality, Limnology, Aquatic Invertebrates
Personal Interests:  Family, being outdoors, running, yoga
Contact: RH 312, 417-625-9704,

Bradley Creamer

Bradley Creamer photoEducation: B.S., Washington State University; M.S., University of Nebraska – Lincoln; Ph.D., University of Nebraska – Medical Center
Teaching Responsibilities: General Biology, Molecular Biology, Genetics
Specialties/Research Interests: Genetic factors of cancer development, mammary gland development, biotechnology in medicine
Advising Areas: Biotechnology, Pre-Medicine
Personal Interests: Family, triathlons, running, hiking, camping, organic gardening, raising chickens
Contact: RH 312, 417-625-3567,

Anna Cunningham

Anna CunninghamEducation: B.S., Missouri Southern State University; Ph.D., University of Missouri - Columbia
Teaching Responsibilities:  Human Anatomy & Physiology I, General Biology
Specialties/Research Interests:  Microbiology, immunology, pathogenesis, autoimmune diseases, vector-borne disease, eicosanoid biology
Personal Interests:  Cheering on my husband at his ultramarathons, spending time with my family, dancing horribly, travelling, cooking, watching movies, and reading.
Contact: RH 236, 417-625-3519,

Mike Fletcher

michael fletcher

Education: M.S., University of Oklahoma; Ph.D., Oklahoma State University
Teaching Responsibilities: Environmental Health, Environmental Protection, Risk Assessment, Epidemiology, Soil Morphology and Sewage Systems, Food and Community Sanitation, Solid Waste Management, Vector Control, Environmental Management
Specialties/Research Interests: Ten plus years as Environmental Specialist with Oklahoma Dept. of Health and Oklahoma Dept. of Environmental Quality
Advising Areas: Environmental Health
Personal Interests:
RH 313A, 417-625-9765, 

Kip Heth

Kip Heth

Education: M.S., Northeastern State University; M.Div., CBTS; Ph.D., University of Arkansas
Teaching Responsibilities: General Biology, Principles of Biology, Aquatic Ecology
Specialties/Research Interests: Freshwater invertebrate community ecology, invertebrate production, Ozark fish community ecology
Advising Areas: Biology – Conservation or Aquatic; Pre-Physical Therapy
Personal Interests: Bird watching, woodworking
Contact: RH 313B, 417-625-9698,

Donna Johnson

Donna Johnson photo Education: D.V.M., University of Missouri
Teaching Responsibilities: Human Anatomy, Human Anatomy and Physiology, Principles of Biology I, Introduction to Life Sciences
Specialties/Research Interests: Advanced dissection, Zoonoses
Advising Areas: Biology – Pre-Med, Pre-Physical Therapy, Pre-Veterinary Medicine
Personal Interests: Organic gardening
Contact: Ummel Technology RH 322B, 417-625-3556,


Mike Kennedy

Mike Kennedy

Education: M.S., Montana Tech of the University of Montana
Teaching Responsibilities: Hazardous Materials and Waste Management, Environmental Regulations and Program Administrations, Occupational Health and Safety, General Biology
Specialties/Research Interests: Hazardous waste investigation and remediation
Advising Areas: Environmental Health
Personal Interests: Golf, lawn and gardening
Contact: RH 312, 417-625-9857,


Mike Lawson

Mike Lawson

Education: M.S., Pittsburg State University; Ed.D., University of Missouri
Teaching Responsibilities: Microbiology, Techniques in Microbiology, Anatomy and Physiology, Principles of Biology
Specialties/Research Interests: Investigations into antibiotic resistance
Advising Areas: Science Education, Biology - Microbiology, Pre-Medicine, Pre-Physician Assistant
Personal Interests: Nebraska Cornhusker football, quail and pheasant hunting, St. Louis Cardinals baseball
Contact: RH 317C, 417-625-9730,


Alla Barry

Alla Peters

Teaching Responsibilities:
Anatomy and Physiology, Pathophysiology
Specialties/Research Interests:
Advising Areas:
Personal Interests:
RH 311, 417-625-9534,


Karen Plucinski

Karen Plucinski

Education: Ph.D., University of Maine
Teaching Responsibilities: General Ecology, Conservation Biology, Evolution, Anatomy and Physiology, Principles of Biology
Specialties/Research Interests: Wildlife ecology and conservation
Advising Areas: Biology – Ecology and Conservation, Pre-Physical Therapy
Personal Interests: Marathon running, hiking
Contact: Ummel Technology 111A, 417-625-9891,


Anna Rinner

Anna Rinner photo Education: B.A., Washburn University; Ph.D., Purdue University
Teaching Responsibilities:  General Biology, Principles of Biology I
Specialties/Research Interests:  Genetics, Conservation Biology, Wildlife Ecology, Molecular Evolution
Personal Interests:  Running, Biking, Hiking, Soccer, Turbo Kick instructor, Traveling, Crafting/DIY projects, and doing activities with my dogs
Contact: RH 322B, 417-625-3053,


Vickie Roettger

Vickie Roettger

Education: Ph.D., Wright State University
Teaching Responsibilities: Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, Pathophysiology, Human Physiology, Principle of Biology
Specialties/Research Interests: Neurophysiology, neurochemistry, cell signaling, cancer
Advising Areas: Pre-medicine
Personal Interests: My cat, reading, needlework, travel, photography
Contact: RH 309, 417-625-3176,


Gerald Schlink

Gerald Schlink

Education: Ph.D., University of Missouri
Teaching Responsibilities: Genetics, Microbiology, Immunology, Pathogenic Bacteriology, Virology
Specialties/Research Interests: Bioinformatics, digital microscopy
Advising Areas: Bioinformatics, Biology – Forensic Science, Pre-Medicine, Pre-Dental
Personal Interests: Sportsman (fishing and hunting – mostly birds), gardening, dancing
Contact: RH 317D, 417-625-9764,


Scott Wells

Scott Wells photo

Education: D.V.M, University of Missouri
Teaching Responsibilities: Principles of Biology, Human Physiology, Pathophysiology
Specialties/Research Interests: Pathology
Advising Areas: Pre-Veterinary Medicine, Pre-Optometry, Pre-Pharmacy
Personal Interests: Time with the family, travel, DIY projects, Go Mizzou!
Contact: RH 320, 417-625-9510,


Jason Willand:

Jason Willand phto Education: B.S., Western Illinois University; M.S., Western Illinois University; Ph.D., Southern Illinois University
Teaching Responsibilities: Economic Botany, Principles of Botany, Taxonomy of Flowering Plants, Plant Pathology, General Biology
Specialties/Research Interests: Plant & Insect Ecology, Restoration Ecology (particularly communities associated with tallgrass prairie)
Personal Interests: Running, cycling, photography, music, & time with my dog
Contacts: RH 312, 417-625-3568,


Melissa Zolnierz:

Melissa Zolnierz photoEducation: BS, Loyola University Chicago, MS, University of Indianapolis, PhD, University of Arkansas
Teaching Responsibilities:  Human Anatomy, Human Anatomy and Physiology I/II
Specialties/Research Interests:  Bioarchaeology, Dental dietary reconstruction, Dentition
Personal Interests:  Reading, shopping, and repurposing antiques
Contact: RH 236, 417-625-3507,


John Messick

John Messick

Professor Emeritus
 Ph.D., University of Idaho
Teaching Responsibilities: Comparative Anatomy, Human Anatomy, Anatomy and Physiology, Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
Specialties/Research Interests: Computing and Data Analysis, GIS
Advising Areas: Transfer and new majors
Personal Interests: Running, cycling, and all things mechanical or technical
Contact: Ummel Technology 111B, 417-625-9341,