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Dr. Sarah Pulvermacher (July 8, 1981-December 17, 2008) completed the requirements for her Ph.D. in Microbiology from The University of Iowa in Fall 2008. This was the culmination of a lifetime of academic success, including graduation from Reedsburg Area High School in Wisconsin in 1999 as a valedictorian. Sarah’s interest in life-long learning was ingrained in her by her parents who took her and her sister to every museum they could find in the area growing up. A 6th grade science camp experience opened her eyes to science. During her time in the biology program at Luther College in Iowa, she attended a summer undergraduate research program at The University of Iowa. It was at this summer program that she found not only her academic future as a graduate student, but the rest of her life as well when she met her future fiancé, support system, and the love of her life, Sean Connolly. Dr. Pulvermacher’s time in the graduate program at The University of Iowa in Dr. George Stauffer’s lab was incredibly successful, with an impressive 4 first author and 1 second author publications. She had plans to engage in post-doctoral research after graduation in Dr. Craig Ellermeier's laboratory at The University of Iowa. Her impact on the students and professors she encountered can be felt both personally and professionally, thanks to both her friendly nature and efficient, intelligent ways in the lab. Her success in the lab was balanced by a life well lived outside of work, as a friend, fiancée, sister, and daughter.
Each year, the Graduate Students in the Department of Microbiology host a seminar speaker in memory of Dr. Pulvermacher. Listed below are past speakers.
Ian Hewson, Ph.D., Department of Microbiology, Cornell University, April 19, 2016"The sea star microbiome orchestra: Old players on a new stage"
Lauren Bakaletz, PhD, Nationwide Children's Hospital, May 5, 2015"Extracellular DNA-associated DNABII proteins as a target for disruption of biofilms formed by nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae"
Kim Lewis, PhD, Northeastern University, February 11, 2014"Persisters and the quest for a biofilm-sterilizing antibiotic"
Michael Schmidt, PhD, Medical University of South Carolina, February 5, 2013"Bacteria, Burden and Bundles: How Copper Surfaces Enhance Patient Safety"
Michael Laub, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, February 28, 2012"Specificity and evolution of bacterial signaling pathways"
Fitnat Yildiz, PhD, University of California Santa Cruz, March 8, 2011"Vibrio cholerae biofilms: structural components and regulatory networks"
David Russell, PhD, Cornell University, April 6, 2010"Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Here today.....and here tomorrow"
Eric Skaar, PhD, MPH, Vanderbilt University, June 9, 2009"The battle for metal between Staphylococcus aureus and its host"
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