Karen E. Stine, PhD, is the recipient of the 2017 Society of Toxicology (SOT) Undergraduate Educator Award. During her distinguished career, Dr. Stine has taught hundreds of students in a variety of toxicology courses, many of which she developed, including courses titled “Introduction to Toxicology,” “Principles of Toxicology,” “Methods in Toxicology,” and “Pharmacology and Toxicology.” She also has directed 28 students in research projects ranging from inhibition of enzymes by neurotoxicants to the study of the role of stress proteins in cellular dysfunction. Sixteen of these students went on to co-author presentations or papers on their research.
As a way to engage high school students, Dr. Stine developed a summer enrichment course in toxicology as part of the Ohio Summer Honors Program and taught in the program for eight years. Over the years, she also has served as an academic advisor to more than 200 students majoring in toxicology and related fields. Outside of her teaching roles, Dr. Stine has co-authored three editions of an undergraduate-level textbook, Principles of Toxicology, which was recently named as a “highly commended” book by the British Medical Association.
Dr. Stine received her PhD in toxicology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1985, and she has spent the majority of her career educating undergraduate students in toxicology. She began her teaching career at Clemson University, where, as an assistant professor, she co-developed and co-taught the first general graduate/advanced undergraduate toxicology course at the university. She also developed a number of other courses with toxicology content, such as “Toxic Substance Management” for business majors and “Industry and the Environment” for other disciplines.
After a brief stint as a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Biology at Radford University, Dr. Stine joined the Ashland University Department of Biology and Toxicology as an associate professor and director of the toxicology program—one of the few BS in toxicology degree programs in the country—where she became a full professor and the chair of the department. More recently, Dr. Stine served as the dean of the School of Sciences at Auburn University at Montgomery and is currently a professor of biology in the Department of Biology. In her time at Auburn University at Montgomery, she has helped develop a new major in environmental science with a concentration in environmental health and toxicology and has prepared and taught the university’s first toxicology course.
A longtime member of SOT, Dr. Stine has been very active within the Society’s undergraduate community. In 1993, she was co-chairperson and presenter for the first SOT poster/discussion session as part of the Undergraduate Toxicology Education and a participant in the 2nd Forum on Undergraduate Education in Toxicology. She has given multiple presentations on innovation and practice in undergraduate education and currently serves on the SOT Undergraduate Education Subcommittee.