Amy Ramsey PhD
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in Life Sciences
Undergraduate Teaching Awards in Life Sciences
Dr. Ramsey earned her BSc in Microbiology at the University of Kentucky, and her PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After postdoctoral training at Duke University Medical Center, she joined the Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology within the Faculty of Medicine, where she is an Associate Professor. Her research focuses on the biology of NMDA receptors and the role that they play in brain disorders such as schizophrenia, autism, and epilepsy. Most recently, she has worked with patient advocates for GRIN disorder to help find effective treatments and cures for this rare genetic condition.
Dr. Ramsey teaches in PCL470, Systems Pharmacology, and is course coordinator and lecturer for PCL200, Drugs and the Brain. PCL200 was first offered in 2017 and is designed as a breadth course to introduce neuropharmacology to non-science majors and first-year science majors. The course is meant to destigmatise brain disorders and help students understand the positive and negative aspects of recreational drugs and prescription medications. Guest speakers from within the Faculty of Medicine, including Dean Young, answer questions that the students have about depression, anxiety, sleep, cannabis, and addiction. More importantly, students learn the fundamentals of neuropharmacology that enable them to subsequently answer their own questions about drugs that affect the brain.
Quote from the Winner
“It’s the questions we can’t answer that teach us the most. They teach us how to think. If you give a man an answer, all he gains is a little fact. But give him a question and he’ll look for his own answers. That way, when he finds the answers, they’ll be precious to him.” – Patrick Rothfuss, A Wise Man’s Fear
About the Award
This award recognizes sustained excellence in teaching, coordination and/or development of an undergraduate lecture or seminar course in Arts and Science offered by the Basic Sciences Departments of the Faculty of Medicine.