WWU Professor Honored as Icon of Education

Dr. Mary Spratt, Cox Distinguished Professor in Science at William Woods University, has been named an Icon of Education by Ingram’s, Kansas City’s business magazine.


Spratt was one of nine Missouri and Kansas leaders chosen for the honor. Dr. Jahnae H. Barnett, president of William Woods University and an Icon recipient last year, nominated Spratt for the award.


Ingram’s calls the educators “standouts in their chosen professions.”  This year’s Icons include four college presidents, two deans, two professors and a school board president.


According to Dennis Boone, managing editor of Ingram’s, “one of this region’s true strengths is a network of outstanding educational assets.” He attributes that to “administrators with vision, instructors with passion to cultivate young minds …”


A WWU faculty member since 1992, Spratt also was recognized as the 2008 Missouri Professor of the Year. Sponsored by The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and administered by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, the award recognizes professors for outstanding commitment in teaching undergraduate students. 


Because of her enthusiasm and passion, Dr. Spratt has impacted the lives of numerous students, who have gone on to be pharmacists, veterinarians, physicians, physician assistants, teachers and scientists.                                                   


Her current research interest is in the field of vector-borne diseases, particularly the study of the emerging ehrlichial and rickettsial diseases as carried by ticks in Missouri. Over the past several years, Spratt and her students have worked to collect and analyze tick DNA from more than 35 Missouri counties.


In 2008 she and WWU were also accepted into the Genomics Education Partnership based at Washington University and the Genome Center in St. Louis. The project gives undergraduate students the opportunity to study genetic codes and genes in living organisms and to make substantive contributions to the published data in genomics.      


Spratt also serves as chief editor of sections of MicrobeLibrary: “Microorganisms in the environment” and “Microbial Evolution and Diversity.”


A graduate of St. Olaf College, with a bachelor’s degree in biology and English, Spratt earned a master’s degree in biology at St. Mary’s College and a master’s and doctorate degree in physiology and cell biology at the University of Kansas.           



CUTLINE: Dr. Mary Spratt, Cox Distinguished Professor in Science at William Woods University