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Alumni Spotlight – Wes Nowlin

TCU Alumni Spotlight | Dr. Weston Nowlin

Weston Nowlin (MS ’98), Ph.D. is a tenured associate professor in the biology department at Texas State University. He credits the master’s program at TCU for having provided an important foundation for his later professional success.

Prior to his senior year of undergraduate work at Austin College, Nowlin volunteered on a TCU research project at the Eagle Mountain Fish Hatchery. He was seeking the research experience to determine his interest in science as a career.

Nowlin returned to Austin College with enthusiasm for the scientific process and an appreciation for the various ecological experiments at the hatchery. He had enjoyed the environment of the TCU biology department and after speaking to Ray Drenner, professor and chair, decided to apply to TCU for graduate study in biology.

Nowlin’s experiences at TCU have made a profound difference in both his personal and professional life. His experiences here opened up many doors through his own research and coursework, along with connections he established at TCU.

Those experiences also helped prepare Nowlin for completion of his doctorate at the University of Victoria in Victoria, British Columbia and to subsequently be successful as a biology professor. He believes the process of creating a high-quality master’s thesis and publishing it in a peer-reviewed journal made his transition to the doctoral program easier.

He said that while some students go directly into a doctoral program, he found earning a master’s degree was a benefit for him. Nowlin also credits the program at TCU for teaching him a work ethic that has allowed him to sustain his career.

Nowlin is currently the director of the Aquatic Resources master’s program at Texas State University in San Marcos and enjoys going to work every day. He often counsels students about graduate programs in general, and sees several strengths that make a master’s degree in biology at TCU truly outstanding. Small classes, close interaction with faculty and great facilities are just some of the factors that create opportunities for TCU graduate students to excel.

Prepared by Jade Garcia, July 2012