FacultyDepartment Chairperson: Rene LaMontagna

Ali Benamar

Melody Candler-Catt

Andrew Corless

Nicole Hagemeier-McVay 

Lauren Kasinger

Patrick Kasinger

Richard Miller

Karen Moesner

Jess Robbins

Lindsay Seals

Nicholas Service

 


Rene LaMontagna
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 225
Office phone number: 812-888-5706
rlamontagna@vinu.edu  

I grew up in the Chicago area and received my B.S. and M.S. degrees in Exercise Physiology from Northern Illinois University.  I teach Anatomy and Physiology courses as well as non-majors biology.  I love both travel and sports photography.  I take pictures for the local high school sports teams to raise money for local charities.  I have traveled to Iceland, Alaska, Canada, the Galapagos Islands, and Africa and hope to keep checking places off my bucket list.   

This is a picture of me with a Raven named Pico in Iceland. Other than cats, I have 3, birds are my favorite animals. 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Ali Benamar
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 203
Office phone number: 812-888-4239
abenamar@vinu.edu

I’m Dr. Ali Benamar, a biology professor teaching anatomy and physiology at Vincennes University. Born and raised in Algeria, I am fluent in French and Arabic. After completing a B.S. in Life Science in Tlemcen, Algeria, I continued on to medical school and obtained a medical degree. I was accepted into the residency program at the university hospital in Tlemcen. Once I completed my residency requirement, I accepted a job as a university physician and worked there until I moved to the United States.  During my college years, I was a member of the red cross and organized several blood drives. I was also a member of the Tlemcen University soccer team, and was able to travel around Algeria competing. I’m still a soccer fan today and love to travel. I have several family members in France, which is one of my favorite vacation spots. I currently reside in Indiana, with my wife and children since 2004.

 


Melody Candler-Catt
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 232
Office phone number: 812-888-4522

mcandler-catt@vinu.edu

My name is Melody Candler-Catt. I am a veterinarian who graduated from Vincennes University and Purdue University. I advise Pre-Vet and Pre-Vet Tech majors.  I enjoy teaching anatomy and physiology, animal agriculture and animal nutrition during the school year and practicing veterinary medicine during the summer. In my free time, I spend time with my husband, daughter, son, 3 dogs, 1 cat and our big extended family.

 

 



Andrew Corless
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 231
Office phone number: 812-888-4253
acorless@vinu.edu

I came to Vincennes University in 2008. I have my Associates degree in Math and Physical Sciences from American River College, Bachelors degree in Neuroscience from Brigham Young University, and a Master’s degree in Physiology and Neurobiology from the University of Connecticut. I currently serve as the Biology Club advisor at VU and have  served as the section chair for the National Association of Biology Teachers BioClub section. You can follow the VU Biology Club’s adventures at: http://www.facebook.com/groups/129575377055129/.

 

 


Nicole Hagemeier-McVay 
Departments of Biology and Chemistry
Office room number: UH 204
Office phone number: 812-888-4324       
nhagemeier-mcvay@vinu.edu

Nicole Hagemeier-McVay began working with VU in the Fall of 2012.  Nicole is a Vincennes University Alumni.  Her Bachelor of Science degree is in Secondary Science Education with a concentration in Chemistry, which she earned from Vincennes University in 2012.  Currently, Nicole is working on her Master of Science degree in Biochemistry.  At VU, she teaches Biology 100 labs as well as Chemistry labs for CHEM 105, 103, and 120.

 

 

 


Lauren Kasinger
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 228
Office phone number: 812-888-4092
lkasinger@vinu.edu

Lauren graduated from Kentucky Wesleyan College in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry with a minor in Biology.  Immediately following graduation, Lauren was hired as a research technologist with the University of Louisville, working exclusively at the Owensboro Cancer Research Program.  This program focused on plant-made pharmaceutical research using tobacco plants to produce proteins for the treatment/prevention of cancer, HIV, HPV, cholera, and Zika virus. While working, Lauren obtained her Master of Science degree in Biotechnology from The Johns Hopkins University.  Her education and experience have focused her skills in biochemistry and molecular biology.  Lauren is a native of Lawrenceville, Illinois and in the fall of 2016 moved back to the area.  In spring of 2017, she began teaching several sections of Bio 100 lab. Lauren teaches Plant and Animal Biology, Principles of Biology I, and Biology: Connections and Impacts.  She is involved with the Women in STEM group here on VU’s campus (Women in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics). In her spare time Lauren loves spending time with her husband, Patrick, and they both enjoy being close to family and friends in Lawrence County. She enjoys being outside, going jogging, cooking, playing music, and plans to get her pilot’s license this summer. 
 

 

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Patrick Kasinger
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 226
Office phone number: 812-888-4542
pkasinger@vinu.edu

Patrick Kasinger began working with VU in January of 2018.  Patrick’s Bachelor of Science degree is in Chemistry with an Endorsement in Education.  He earned this degree from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE).  Patrick is the Biology Department’s Laboratory Supervisor, managing laboratory duties that include setting up and taking down the department’s various lab courses for Biology, Microbiology, Anatomy and Physiology, and others.  He has 5 years’ experience teaching High School Chemistry, Physics, and Earth Science as well as 2 years teaching Junior High Science.

 

 

Richard Miller
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 204
Office phone number: 812-888-4324
rmiller@vinu.edu

Richard Miller joined VU in 1982.  Richard is a Vincennes University Alumnus.  He earned his Associate of Science degree from Vincennes University in 1979.  He went on to complete a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy from Purdue University in 1981.  Here at VU, he teaches Biology 100 Labs Biology Connections and Impacts as well as Plant and Animal Labs.


 

 

 



Karen Moesner
VU, Jasper Campus
Department of Biology
Office room number: Habig 206
Office phone number: 812- 481-5913  

kmoesner@vinu.edu

I began working with VU in 1989.  I teach A & P I and II and Microbiology for the Health Sciences.  I am a medical technologist having worked 42 years in the hospital in healthcare. I am a Certified Coding Specialist (CCS-P). My Medical Technology degree is from ISU.  This is also where I optained my M.S. in Science Teaching.  My B.S. is in Science Education from USI.  I enjoy gardening, cooking, canning and crafts. I enjoy networking with my healthcare family workers, I have daughter and daughter-in-laws that are speech pathologist, nurse, social worker and nurse practitioner.  We collaborate a lot on patients and healthcare issues. I advise General Studies majors, as well as Pre-Dental, Radiography, and PTA majors.  I love teaching students about the body!


Jess Robbins
Department of Biology 
Office room number: UH 227
Office phone number: 812-888-4524
jrobbins@vinu.edu


I started working at VU in 2015.  I went to VU to earn my Associates in Science, the University of Southern Indiana and Justus-Liebig University in Giessen, Germany for a double major in Biology and German, and then to Indiana State University where I received my Master's and PhD in Plant Physiology, doing extensive research on gravitational physiology of plants in simulated microgravity with the grape plant, Vitis vinifera, as my model organism.  I am certified in TESL/TEFL, teaching English as a second or foreign language and have met many great people from foreign countries through these experiences as well as my travels to Germany, France, the UK, Greece, and Italy.  Since receiving my 200 hour-RYT certification, I teach yoga at our local yoga studio, First City Movement. I advise Biology majors and teach Plant and Animal Biology, Principles of Biology I & II and the labs that go with these courses.  I also teach Human Issues and Dilemmas, Biology 100 labs and Fundamentals of Horticulture.  Outside of teaching, my next priorities are traveling and exploring new languages and cultures.  I'm also an animal and plant enthusiast, especially puppies, goats, and grapevines.

 


Lindsay Seals
Department of Biology
Office room number: UH 222
Office phone number: 812-888-5775
lseals@vinu.edu

I started at VU in 2015.  I went to Southern Illinois University, Carbondale and have B.S. and M.S. degrees in microbiology, molecular biology, and biochemistry.  I teach microbiology for health science and biology majors.  I also get to teach our BIOL 100 course for non-science majors.  I advise Molecular & Laboratory Biology majors, Pre-Chiropractic, Pre- Physician Assistant, and Pre-Occupational Therapy majors. Outside of work, I enjoy reading books, long-distance running, and working in our small orchard and garden with family, friends, and our very enthusiastic dogs. 

 



Nicholas Service
VU, Jasper Campus
Department of Biology

nservice@vinu.edu

My name is Nicholas Servis.  I am currently an Associate Professor of Science at Vincennes University-Jasper Campus. I have been at Vincennes for nine years and have taught Chemistry and Biology courses including BIOL100 (Biology:  Connections and Impacts). Besides my teaching, I have conducted research funded by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources on the biological and chemical assessment of the water quality of local lakes. Currently, I am an active member of the American Society for Microbiology, American Medical Technologists and the American Chemical Society. Before my time at Vincennes, I worked in the biotechnology industry for five years and I am also a registered Medical Technologist with several years of experience working in clinical laboratories.

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