Director, R.B. Annis Department of Math & Science, Interlochen Arts Academy
Instructor of Biology, Interlochen Arts Academy
Mary Ellen Newport has taught biology at the high school and collegiate level for nine years, and has ten years of collegiate and independent school administrative experience. She is an evolutionary biologist with an interest in conservation biology. She has done doctoral and postdoctoral work in the areas of population and quantitative genetics. Her doctoral work showed that genetic variability for remating speed is greater in females than males of Drosophila melanogaster, and that some manifestations of ‘sperm competition’ in that species is an artifact of experimental design. In her postdoctoral work, Mary Ellen demonstrated that pollinators are an agent of natural selection on flower size in the alpine skypilot, and she searched for gene expression in vertebrate embryos. Most recently she started a land trust in eastern Ohio to protect the last breeding population of hellbender salamanders in the state. A long-time meditator, she is curious about the effects of meditation on learning and the brain. As the ninth grade science teacher, Mary Ellen weaves math, science, art and technology into an inviting sphere for students to experience success and joy in the sciences.