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‘A Tireless Advocate for Graduate Students,’ Dean Lynn Cooley reappointed

May 15, 2019

Yale News

Lynn Cooley has been appointed to a second term as dean of the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, President Peter Salovey announced on May 7. Her second five-year term will begin July 1.

Cooley is the C.N.H. Long Professor of Genetics and professor of cell biology and molecular, cellular & developmental biology. A leader on campus and beyond, she has served on the boards of the Genetics Society of America and Connecticut College, and she is an organizer for the upcoming Allied Genetics Conference. She is also a member of the Connecticut Academy for Science and Engineering and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Cooley’s connection to Yale started in 1980 when she joined Dieter Söll’s lab in molecular biophysics & biochemistry. After completing her Ph.D. at the University of Texas-Austin, which was based on research carried out in the Söll lab, and postdoctoral training at the Carnegie Institution of Science in Baltimore, Cooley returned to Yale in 1989 as an assistant professor in the Department of Genetics. She then established a research program studying the cell biology of egg development using Drosophila as a model system, and she continues to direct an active research lab. Prior to her appointment to her first term as dean, Cooley was also director of the Combined Program in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences.

In announcing the reappointment, Salovey praised Cooley’s leadership during her first term. Calling her “a tireless advocate for graduate students,” the president noted the significance of her guidance while “convening a range of important conversations about graduate education in the twenty-first century.”

During her first term, Cooley initiated annual graduate program reviews, which focus on student recruitment, progress, and employment outcomes. Cooley also worked to enhance the clarity and structure of advising processes for faculty and graduate students, expanded efforts to attract students who bring diversity and excellence to Yale, and increased the level of financial support for Ph.D. students and their families.

Graduate students are at the center of the research mission of the university, pursuing their curiosity about topics ranging from cells to societies to galaxies alongside faculty mentors. I thank President Salovey for entrusting me with the opportunity to work with wonderfully creative graduate students, faculty and staff on ways to further improve graduate education at Yale,” said Cooley when reached for comment after the announcement.

While serving as dean of the Graduate School, Cooley has continued her research on the development of eggs and sperm in fruit flies, with consideration of the implications for human fertility.