Our Graduates in Biology

New College Biology graduates are at work in diverse areas around the country and the world. Some go on to professional careers such as M.D.s or M.D./Ph.D.s, D.D.S., and V.M./Ph.D.s. Some go into teaching. Still others find a path that is uniquely their own. Here is a quick look at two of our graduates in Biology:

Sharon Matola '78 (above) is often referred to as “the Jane Goodall of Central America.” She founded the Belize Zoo in 1983 to protect native animals. Her life story, in particular her struggle to stop the Chalillo dam, is documented in the book, The Last Flight of the Scarlet Macaw: One Woman’s Fight to Save the World’s Most Beautiful Bird (2008) by Bruce Barcott.

Chris Doe, Ph.D., '77 is a Professor of Biology and a Member of the Institute of Neuroscience and the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Oregon, Eugene. But his career and his interests in developmental biology were honed at New College. Take a look at this bio on Chris from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute:

People who knew Chris Doe as a child didn’t need a medium or a crystal ball to know he was likely to pursue science of some sort. A Jacques Cousteau devotee, Doe built makeshift submarines in his Southern California backyard and tried them out in various lakes and streams. “My path was easily predicted early on,” Doe laughs. What wasn’t so obvious was how a passion for oceanography resulted in a life’s work studying neural stem cells and neural development. As a biology major at the New College of Florida, Sarasota, Doe met his first mentor, John Morrill, a developmental biologist working on sea urchins. Peering through the microscope in Morrill’s lab, Doe watched an organism develop from a fertilized egg.“I got really excited about developmental biology in college and that was where I switched from wanting to be an oceanographer,” he says. It was with that excitement that Doe entered Stanford University as a graduate student to study how stem cells from grasshoppers develop into neurons. Learn more about Dr. Doe’s path.

New College is proud of the many Biology graduates who have contributed to the field. Here's a sampling of some of our graduates as well:

Steve Barbeaux - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries.

James Custis, M.D. - physician, emergency medicine.

Dayna Ayers Baumeister, Ph.D. - co-founder Biomimicry Guild.

Sabrina Burmeister, Ph.D. - faculty member, Stanford University.

Jessica Hickmott, M.D. - physician, Sydney, Australia.

Sharon Matola - founder and owner, Belize Zoo, Belize City, Belize.

Laura Navarro - National Hispanic Scholar currently in her last year of medical school at Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine.

Lonnie Draper, M.D. - currently an entrepreneur in healthcare technology (CEO of Avocare), former V.P. of Emergency Medicine at Tallahassee Memorial. He is also an associate professor in Emergency Medicine for the Florida State University College of Medicine.

Greg Stemm - founder/CEO, Odyssey Marine Explorations, Tampa, Florida.

Mark Carroll, Ph.D. - research entomologist, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Craig Brown, Ph.D. - fisheries biologist, National Marine Fishery Service, Miami, Florida.

Christine Hamilton-Hall, M.D. - maxillofacial and cosmetic facial surgeon, Aesthetic and Maxillofacial Surgery Center, Darien, Connecticut.

John Lentini - fire scientist, Scientific Fire Analysis, Big Pine Key, Florida.

Michael Lepore, M.D. - vascular surgeon, Samson Showalter, Lepore Surgeons, Sarasota, Florida.

Randall Moon, Ph.D. - investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Professor of Pharmacology, University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. Also founding director and William and Marilyn Conner Chair at the Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine and senior co-founder of Fate Therapeutics in San Diego, California.

Julie Morris - Assistant VP of Academic Affairs, New College of Florida; Former Chair, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, Sarasota, Florida.

Dennis Saver, M.D. - founding president/family physician, Primary Care of the Treasure Coast, former Florida Family Physician of the Year, Vero Beach, Florida.

Kelly Samek, J.D. - senior assistant general counsel, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Havana, Florida.

Angelica Vrablic, Ph.D. - product development scientist, Rexall Sundown Corp., Delray Beach, Florida.

Sample of Graduate Schools Attended by NCF Students in Biology

• Cambridge University
• University of California, Berkeley
• Stanford
• University of Wisconsin
• Brown University
• Florida State University
• University of Florida
• Scripps
• University of Arizona
• University of California, Santa Barbara


24 New College graduates have been named National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellows, one of academia's most prestigious awards.

Office of the Provost
New College of Florida
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Phone: (941) 487-4200
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