Biology: Chair and assistant professor of biology
Pre-Health: Assistant professor of biology
Pre-Medicine: Assistant professor of biology
Neuroscience: Assistant professor of biology, program co-coordinator
Special Interest: cell biology, neuroscience, developmental biology, virology, and biology education for non-majors
Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee: Chair
- Cell biology of the brain: Granule neuron regulation of Purkinje cell development
- Molecular biology of the brain: Gene expression changes and signaling events during development of the cerebellum
- Mammalian Genetics: effects of mutations on mouse brain development
Mary Morrison came to Lycoming from The Scripps Research Institute in 2004. Her research group studies the development of the cerebellum, a brain region responsible for balance and coordination of motion, and she has supervised numerous students doing independent studies and honors projects involving projects relating to brain development.
She teaches Introductory Biology, Neurobiology, Cell Biology, Immunology, and Cells, Genes, and Society, an introductory course for non-biology majors. Morrison introduced a Cell and Molecular Biology Research Methods course in which students develop their own research projects, including primary literature research, grant proposal writing and peer review, wet lab work, and preparation of journal-style articles and research conference-style poster presentations. She has also helped establish a state-of-the-art microscopic imaging facility at Lycoming.
Morrison has mentored undergraduate students who have gone on to graduate and medical studies at Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Brown, University of Pennsylvania, Temple and Hershey Medical Center to name a few. She advises students through the Health Professions Advisory Committee, and is co-coordinator of the new interdisciplinary neuroscience minor at Lycoming.
Morrison received the Carol Ann Paul Educator of the Year Award from the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience organization in 2015. The national award recognizes a member of the organization for notable efforts to promote the effective teaching of neuroscience at the undergraduate level.
Morrison has served on the board of the Lycoming County Audubon Society, and has experience handling and training raptors (birds of prey: hawks, falcons, eagles, and owls). She has also studied the endangered desert bighorn sheep populations in the Anza-Borrego desert east of San Diego. To complement her lifelong passion for biology, she is an avid amateur naturalist, animal tracker, backpacker, kayak enthusiast, skier, ice skater, and volleyball player.
Morrison has recently been featured in a few videos regarding neuroscience research, including: