Loretta Taras, Ph.D.
Kingsborough Community College
Loretta Brancaccio-Taras has a doctorate in microbiology from St. John’s University. Currently, she is a Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and the Director of the Center for e-Learning at Kingsborough Community College (KCC). For the past 25 years, Brancaccio-Taras has worked with the diverse students, primarily from Brooklyn, New York that KCC serves, focusing on improving STEM completion rates through funds from the National Science Foundation. In addition to working with KCC students, she also works with KCC faculty on course design and education research studies. As a result of the training she received through American Society for Microbiology’s (ASM) Scholars-in-Residence program, Brancaccio-Taras has worked with over 50 KCC faculty members through KCC’s Center for Teaching and Learning, Brancaccio-Taras to develop and publish discipline-based education research projects. She is an active member of ASM Brancaccio-Taras is an active member of ASM, serving as webinar leader and research section senior editor for The Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. She is also a Partnership for Life Science Education (PULSE), leadership fellow; this work focuses on departmental STEM reform based on the report Vision and Change In Undergraduate Biology Education: A Call to Action. As a result of her work with underrepresented students and participating in local and national STEM education reform efforts, Brancaccio-Taras was the 2016 recipient of ASM’s Carski Foundation Distinguished Teaching Award.