SUNY Online Teaching Ambassador 2022: Suffolk – Padma Seshadri
Dr. Padma Seshadri is a professor at SUNY Suffolk, where she teaches microbiology. Dr. Seshadri received her doctorate in Biological Sciences with concentration in microbiology, from St. John’s University. For her dissertation, she studied a microbe known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. She obtained her M.S degree in Biological Sciences with concentration in microbiology, from St. John’s University. Her master’s thesis involved the analysis of antibiotic producing bacteria. She has a B.S degree (magna cum laude), from Long Island University, in Medical Biology and an A.S degree from SUNY Suffolk County Community College, where she was a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and graduated with distinction.
She continues to update her knowledge by taking courses at institutions such as Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories. She is the founder and faculty advisor to the STEM Journal Club, which promotes scientific inquiry and nature conservation. She has given presentations, on student-centered learning, at the American Society for Microbiology Conference for Undergraduate Educators. She is a member of several professional organizations including American Society for Microbiology and American Society of Clinical Pathologists. Her goal as an educator is to facilitate students’ success by teaching her students the concepts of the course as well as aid her students to acquire skills such as critical thinking by creating a pleasant student-centered environment in class/in lab, which promotes curiosity for scientific inquiry and enthusiastic motivation to learn and comprehend the biological processes.
I believe that teaching and learning process should include, in addition to emphasizing fundamental concepts of the course, acquisition of skills such as critical thinking, analytical, problem solving, lifelong learning, scientific reasoning, application of knowledge and communication. I have found that active participation of students in the learning process, enhances their enthusiasm and increases their motivation to acquire knowledge. Therefore, I design my online courses, where the students have plenty of opportunities to actively get involved in the learning process. Online classes facilitate the students, especially, those who hesitate to participate in the face-to-face classes, to share their thoughts and ideas with ease. The convenience and the flexibility associated with online classes make lifelong learning possible, even when the students are working full time.
I thank all the members of the Center for Innovative Pedagogy team at SUNY Suffolk for their support and guidance they provide by conducting e-learning workshops and training sessions.