BUCKHANNON, West Virginia – The winner of the West Virginia Wesleyan College Award for Exemplary Teaching challenges her students and mentors them to become researchers and future professionals in the field of biology.

During Founders Day 2022, Dr. Melanie Sal, Associate Professor of Biology, was presented the award from interim Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Lynn Linder.

The College annually recognizes the accomplishments of a professor who displays professional competence, dedication to the growth of students, and commitment to the highest academic standards to create a campus environment in which learning flourishes.

Sal is known for offering extremely challenging classes in keeping with the College’s academic rigor, while also providing students with all of the tools and support they need to be successful, actively engaging them in every class and pushing them to exceed expectations.

Sal partners with students on research projects and fosters their presentations at academic conferences. Many of these students are now cutting-edge biomedical researchers, family medicine providers, veterinarians and nurses. Some are employed at the National Institutes of Health, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, St. Jude’s Hospital and others.

After earning her Ph.D. in Microbiology from West Virginia University School of Medicine’s Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Cell Biology, Sal completed post-doctoral training at Quillen College of Medicine on the campus of East Tennessee State University.  She has been at West Virginia Wesleyan College since 2009, teaching and conducting research including a collaborative project on the surveillance of ticks and Borrelia in Upshur County. Sal teaches a variety of biomedically related courses including Principles of Molecular Biology, Physiology, General Microbiology, Principles of Microbiology, and immunology.  She serves as the advisor for Beta Mu Chapter of Beta Beta Beta Biology Honor Society and also for the Pre-Healthcare Society at WVWC.

West Virginia Wesleyan College (WVWC) is a private, four-year residential liberal arts college in Buckhannon, West Virginia. A tradition of excellence for more than 130 years, West Virginia Wesleyan is home to 14 Fulbright Scholars. The Princeton Review ranked Wesleyan one of its 2023 Best Colleges in the Southeastern Region of the United States. U.S. News & World Report’s 2022-2023 Best College Rankings designated Wesleyan seventh in Best Value – Regional Universities (South). WVWC offers students more than 40 majors and 40 minors; graduate programs in athletic training, business administration, creative writing, and nursing; 22 NCAA Division II athletic programs; multiple performing arts groups; and more than 70 organizations. Founded in 1890, the College is closely affiliated with the United Methodist Church and abides by the Wesley doctrine that emphasizes service to others. For more information, visit wvwc.edu.