Catching up with recent graduates

I’ve been remiss in updating news on this site. I’m pleased to say that three members of the lab have graduated with PhD. Dr. Joseph Maciag, Dr. Melvin Thomas, and, most recently, Dr. Robert (Bob) Grinshpon. Congratulations to Joe, Melvin, and Bob, and thanks for the work they put into helping the lab move from North Carolina to Texas. Check out the Publications page to read their papers.

Dr. Joseph Maciag

Dr. Joseph Maciag

Joe is now a post-doc at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital






Dr. Melvin Thomas III

Dr. Melvin Thomas III


Melvin is now a post-doc at St. Jude







Dr. Robert (Bob) Grinshpon

Dr. Robert (Bob) Grinshpon



Bob will be looking for opportunities in industry after a tour of Europe

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A trip to Enzymes 2017 and Kanha National Park

face1_2I recently attended an Indo-US conference on enzymes in Navi Mumbai, India ( (Advances in Enzymology: Implications in Health, Disease and Therapeutics). One goal of the Indo-US conference is to highlight research in India to US scientists. This particular conference was held at ACTREC (Advanced Center for Treatment, Research, and Education in Cancer:, and we learned about the fantastic research projects and facilities in India. We also learned more about Indian culture through various cultural festivities and excursions to Colaba in Mumbai ( After the conference concluded, we had the opportunity to visit the Kanha National Park and tiger reserve ( The views were spectacular. The images and video below show flora and fauna of the park.




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Our statement to international staff and students

Dear Colleagues,

We consider that diversity is one of the major strengths of the Biology department. The community of faculty, staff, and students is inclusive and welcoming to everyone, regardless of nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity. We are committed to maintaining our diversity and fostering a supportive, collegial, and collaborative environment where everyone recognizes their importance as part of our team. We understand that our international students could have chosen to attend graduate programs anywhere in the world, but they chose to move here to UTA. We want to affirm that we stand with them in this time of uncertainty, and we will help in any way that we can to assist them in navigating the new policies. Our doors are always open to hear your concerns.


Clay Clark, Professor and Chair

Laura Mydlarz, Associate Professor and Associate Chair

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What’s it like to write a review article?


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September 25, 2015 · 6:20 pm

Faculty jobs in Biology at UTA


We’re searching for several faculty at the assistant and associate professor levels. The following ad is currently posted in Science, the Chronicle, and other sites. Contact me if you have questions about the Department of Biology, UT Arlington, or the Dallas metroplex area.


The University of Texas Arlington

Department of Biology

Search Id: COS09102015BIO


The Department of Biology at the University of Texas at Arlington ( invites applications for multiple tenure-track faculty positions at the level of Assistant or Associate Professor. Research areas of interest include fundamental questions related to microbiomes and complex microbial communities, host-pathogen interactions, epidemiology, cellular biology, developmental biology, genetics, and global change biology. Approaches using cutting edge genomic, proteomic, bioinformatic and statistical modeling techniques are particularly attractive. Successful candidates will have a doctoral degree in a relevant field and will be expected to develop a nationally recognized, extramurally funded research program, as well as teach at the undergraduate and graduate (Master’s and Ph.D.) levels. Start-up funds, salaries, and teaching loads are highly competitive.


The Department and University have numerous resources including state-of-the-art labs, an Animal Care Facility, a Genomics Core Facility, a Center for Human Genomics, and the newly established Shimadzu Institute for Research Technologies – a major partnership between UT Arlington and Shimadzu Scientific Instruments that offers extensive resources for imaging, proteomics and analytical chemistry. The Department also benefits from access to core UT-system genomics and computational resources at UT Southwestern Medical Center and the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) – one of the leading advanced computing centers in the U.S. Excellent opportunities exist at UT Arlington and in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex for collaborations with researchers in ecology, evolution, genomics, biochemistry, and biomedical sciences.


Arlington is a city of approximately 365,000 and is conveniently located in the center of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Within a 25-mile radius of the center of Arlington is a workforce of over two million people. The city has 82 public parks, including River Legacy Parks, a 1,300-acre oasis on the Trinity River in the heart of north Arlington. Arlington is the home of the Dallas Cowboys Stadium, the Texas Rangers Ballpark, and Six Flags Over Texas. Cost of living is relatively low for a major metropolitan area. The Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport is the fourth largest airport in the US. More information on the city of Arlington can be found at


Applicants must apply by submitting application materials in PDF format to Applicants should include in their application: 1) curriculum vitae, 2) summary of current and proposed research (three pages), 3) teaching interests, and 4) names and email addresses of four references. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the positions are filled. A criminal background check will be conducted on finalists.


As an equal employment opportunity and affirmative action employer, it is the policy of The University of Texas at Arlington to promote and ensure equal employment opportunity for all individuals without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or veteran status.

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UTA Maverick Speaker Series Announced

The University of Texas at Arlington has announced five speakers in the Maverick Speaker Series for the 2015-2016 academic year.


Mia Farrow – “What Falls Away: One Woman’s Journey to Fulfillment” Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015, 7:30 p.m. Texas Hall – Tickets available Sept. 8, 2015

Daymond John – “Daymond John on Shark Tank Entrepreneurship” Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015, 7:30 p.m. College Park Center – Tickets available Oct. 6, 2015

Ron Paul – “Liberty Defined: The Future of Freedom” Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2016, 7:30 p.m. Texas Hall – Tickets available Jan. 5, 2016

Donna Brazile – “Donna Brazile: Politics and Beyond” Thursday, Feb. 25, 2016, 7:30 p.m. Texas Hall – Tickets available Jan. 19,

Jane Goodall – “Gombe and Beyond: An Evening with Dr. Jane Goodall” Thursday, March 31, 2016, 7:30 p.m. College Park Center – Tickets available March 1, 2016

More information is available here.

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A few words about your resume

clay_cartoon4 If you read the most recent blog, you’ll know that I moved recently to the Biology Department at UT Arlington. As part of the process of setting up the lab at UTA, I’m reviewing applications for various positions in the department and in my lab. Many of the candidates are very well qualified for the positions, but it is not always obvious in their resume. So, in the interest of helping candidates improve their chances of passing the first stage of review, I offer the following comments, noting that some of the information might also be helpful to faculty candidates, with a blog coming later on that aspect of growing the department.

Make sure your skills match the job description.

If the job description requests expertise in molecular biology, then don’t describe your experience in designing synthesis schemes for small organic drug compounds. If I want to hire someone who can perform site-directed mutagenesis and has expertise in cell culture, then your skills may not fit the job description. You may be an outstanding organic chemist, but I’m looking for someone who can step into the position and make an immediate impact while learning the other techniques with which you may have less knowledge.

If you have any experience with the skills listed in the job description, then highlight them in your resume. Sending a resume that doesn’t match the required skills tells me that you will take any job available and that you are hoping that your vast experience in your field will get you an interview. That may be true in some cases, but if you live in a large Metroplex such as the Dallas-Fort Worth area, then there is usually a well-educated and highly skilled pool of applicants with which you will be competing.

If you don’t have the required skills, then don’t apply for the job.

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