I moved to Dalton and Dalton State College in 2008 after obtaining a BSc Hons. Bachelors degree in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Nottingham, England, a MPH Master's degree in Public Health from the University of Manchester, England and a D.Phil. (PhD) in Clinical Medicine from the University of Oxford, England. I began teaching alongside these studies and it quickly became a passion, and I have worked with students from all over the globe with different backgrounds and abilities. I focus on student engagement in my classes using different interactive teaching methods and tailor my classes towards each different group of learners.
My doctoral research was in clinical infectious diseases focused on pathogenesis of severe Plasmodium falciparum malarial infection and I retain an interest in this through philanthropic work. Since moving to the United States, I have developed an interest on the impact of environmental contaminants on human health and disease, the development of novel antimicrobials and the burden of infectious diseases in local tick and mosquitos. My current projects involving students are investigating the antimicrobial properties of local snake venom for drug development and a studying the levels and impact of perfluorinated compounds on human health and disease. I actively encourage student involvement in research projects and I am happy to talk to interested students at any time.
Dr. Smitherman was the 2013 recipient of the Faculty Excellence in Service award, the 2014 recipient of the Faculty Excellence in Teaching award and is currently serving as the Director of the Center for Academic Excellence.