March’s Professor of the Month

Professor Elba Serrano

Dr. Elba Serrano was an undergrad physics and chemistry major who enjoyed philosophy. She moved into neuroscience in graduate school and became a biophysicist! She mentioned being fortunate because she has been able to explore her curiosity such as neurons, drugs, nanomaterials, and plant bioactive compounds. When asked where she is from, she will respond by saying she’s from Planet Earth! She grew up as a “military brat,” so therefore believes she is from different places. However, she found a home called NMSU in 1992 and has been here ever since. Outside of teaching, this passionate human being enjoys movement and visual arts. She also finds passion in learning new skills and languages because it reminds her what it’s like to be a student and the creativity inherent in the beginner’s mind. Of course this fabulous professor enjoys reading and when asked to choose her favorite she mentioned the “I Ching” (Book of Changes) as a keeper! Her favorite thing about the Honors College is “working with creative and motivated students who challenge me to stay on my edge; being able to develop innovative course offerings that reach students across colleges and departments. I believe the seminar size encourages thoughtful discussion and discourages student anonymity in the classroom. As a first generation college graduate who was very uncomfortable and lonely when I arrived at a university, I appreciate the support and friendly environment that Honors provides for students seeking to make the most out of their education.” Her advice to students is: “When you ask someone whose job has the word “profess” in it, be sure to set a time or word limit! Here are my top five in less than 40 words and no particular order: aim high and work hard; seek advice but make your own decisions; quitting is never an option; practice kindness and cultivate your sense of humor; never forget where you come from but where you are going is up to you.”


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