Professor Jim Burritt is a faculty member in the UW-Stout biology department. He describes his work as focused on getting students interested in science.
Much of that focus involves providing opportunities for undergraduate students to engage in research projects as part of the classes he teaches.
Burritt teaches microbiology, cell biology, molecular biology and a topic he is particularly passionate about—immunology. In keeping with UW-Stout’s focus on applied learning, his courses have a strong lab component, and many provide students with an opportunity to do research as part of the class laboratory experience.
Aside from teaching, Buritt has engaged extensively in research outside of the classroom as well. His love for research began in earnest during graduate school and has continued ever since.
His most recent work has focused on Colony Collapse Disorder in honeybees. He and his students recently discovered a bacterium that may contribute to CCD, and his lab continues to follow up on that work.
He finds the lessons students learn in the laboratory—how to think critically, how to ask questions that improve understanding, what it means to become an expert in your area of research—can’t be learned elsewhere.
He gets great satisfaction from students becoming fascinated with a research question and figuring out the type of experiments they need to engage in order to answer the question.
Burritt has been at UW-Stout since 2009. He received most of his training at Montana State University and was enthusiastic about applying for a position in the biology department at UW-Stout.
Fortunately, he was offered and accepted the position and has been at the university ever since.
Burritt particularly appreciates the students he works with. They have big hearts, are generous, hard-working, respectful and grateful for the guidance they receive from faculty.
Considering the future of UW-Stout, Burritt hopes that the university will gain the support it needs to be more secure and to make it easier to do new things. He has been pleased with the windows to opportunity that new equipment has provided (e.g., a flow cytometer in the science building) in preparing students for careers and hopes that funding to support cutting-edge equipment will continue.
Outside of work, Burritt and his wife enjoy spending time outdoors and manage to visit the bike path in Menomonie frequently.
In addition, his son-in-law has opened his eyes to the excellent trout stream fishing in many places in Wisconsin and Minnesota, and he takes advantage of those fishing opportunities whenever he can.
We look forward to Burritt continuing to blend teaching and research at UW-Stout in ways that facilitate student learning for many years to come.