Mary Beth Mudgett
Senior Associate Dean for the Natural Sciences and Professor of Biology
Postdoctoral Scholar, University of California, Berkeley, Plant-Microbe Interactions (2001)
Postdoctoral Scholar, University of California, Los Angeles, Biochemistry (1995)
PhD, University of California, Los Angeles, Biochemistry (1994)
BA, Ithaca College, Biochemistry (1989)
Mary Beth Mudgett, the Stanford Friends University Fellow in Undergraduate Education, is the Senior Associate Dean for the Natural Sciences in the School of Humanities & Sciences. She received her doctorate in biochemistry at University of California, Los Angeles and has been a professor in Stanford's Department of Biology since 2002. Her research group studies plant-pathogen interactions, focusing on the biochemical mechanisms that pathogens use to manipulate the plant immune system resulting in disease outbreaks. As president of the International Society for Plant-Microbe Interactions, Mudgett launched a series of virtual symposia and platforms to enable networking on a global scale, while creating an inclusive environment to hear from the society’s diverse stakeholders. Mudgett is also passionate about teaching and mentorship. She has launched new initiatives within biology to embrace different learning styles and enhance the student experience in the classroom. She also partners with faculty and staff across campus to increase student diversity within the natural sciences. In her prior role as Senior Associate Dean for Education Initiatives, Mary Beth has led an effort to reshape introductory science and math courses to better support students with different levels of preparation for success in STEM majors. She also has overseen an initiative to enhance undergraduate teaching, including a schoolwide mentorship program for junior faculty. As co-chair of Stanford’s Academic Continuity Group, Mudgett helped the university blaze a path through the thicket of teaching challenges posed by the pandemic. She helped to solve problems involving online learning and curriculum development and to create the infrastructure and support needed for faculty, staff, and students to safely return to in-person instruction. In addition, she directed the Dean’s Fellows Program, which provided teaching and research opportunities for graduate students completing their degrees and facing a job market made challenging by the pandemic. In her current role, she is dedicated to champion the core missions in research, teaching, and mentoring within the natural science community.