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Microbiologist Amy Vollmer Named Fellow of American Academy of Microbiology

Amy Cheng Vollmer


Isaac H. Clothier Jr. Professor of Biology Amy Cheng Vollmer has been named a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM).

The AAM elected 96 new fellows earlier this month, in a highly selective and peer-reviewed process, based on their records of scientific achievement and original contributions to advanced microbiology.

“I am extremely honored by this — very few faculty at small colleges are nominated and elected fellows of the AAM,” says Vollmer, who was recently named a Phil Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar.  “I look forward to working with AAM members to mentor [both undergraduates and graduate students].”

The AAM is an honorific leadership group within the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), in which Vollmer has been actively involved for many years. In 2006, Vollmer received the Carski Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching Award from the AAM.

Vollmer joined the faculty at Swarthmore in 1989. Her work focuses on bacteria and archaea, and she has taught a wide range of courses relating to microbiology. She conducts research specifically on bacterial stress responses, having hosted dozens of Swarthmore students in her laboratory over the years. Additionally, Vollmer has taught for and now directs the Swarthmore Summer Scholars Program.

Through the AAM, she joins more than 2,400 fellows from throughout the world and all facets of the microbial sciences. They participate in basic and applied research, teaching, public health, industry, and government service.

Also among this year’s elected fellows is Elizabeth Campbell ’92, a senior research associate in the Laboratory of Molecular Biophysics at The Rockefeller University — and a former student of Vollmer’s at Swarthmore.

“I’m delighted to be in the same entering class as Elizabeth,” says Vollmer. “She and I will share a champagne toast at this June’s ASM meeting!”

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