Dana Campbell

Dana Campbell finished her PhD in evolutionary biology from Harvard University in 1999. Since then she has enjoyed the benefits of exploring many topics in biology as an independent scholar and at-home mom in Maryland. She spends summers with her husband and two daughters, ages 5 and 9, at the University of Washington marine biology research labs in the beautiful San Juan Islands.

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November 16, 2010
This morning at the breakfast table (as my husband was hurriedly scheduling his day on his laptop), my seven-year-old said, “I just want a day where you don’t have to always be on your computer.” Turned out that although she agreed a day with the whole family home and no one working – my interpretation of her statement – sounded great, her immediate motivation was that she was antsy for a time when she could get on my computer to complete a school project.
October 27, 2010
(First, an incident that might be slightly off-topic but which I found amusing: ) Last night I get in my car to drive to the local high school seven blocks away for a town hall style meeting with the superintendent of our enormous school system. As I drive up our block, a car turns out onto the street directly in front of me – our new neighbor (at-home father of three young children). He turns, I follow. He turns again, I follow.
October 12, 2010
The other day a friend of mine asked if we had an extra TV kicking around that we could do without. Not for her household, it turned out, for a family she met who has recently moved to our neighborhood for a year on sabbatical from Norway. The house they are living in is huge but completely unfurnished and although their three young boys enjoy sliding around in empty rooms, they really needed some basic furniture other than the few essentials they bought at Ikea.
September 21, 2010
At a recent birthday party one of my daughter’s friends received a copy of the young readers edition of the book “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” by Michael Pollan. The dust jacket describes the book as “an unforgettable journey behind the scenes of your dinner”. My daughter was intrigued. It is a very readable narrative, and since she found it in the library a last week, she has carried it around constantly.
September 8, 2010
Last week I read a publication newly released by the AAUP (American Association for University Professors) giving “Recommendations on partner accommodation and dual career appointments.In reading it, I started thinking about some of the many dual-academic couples I know.
August 25, 2010
What with winter over, we’re now ready to jump back into school again. Let me explain that: my family and I are just back home from 10 weeks of travel first to western Washington state (where June and July were pretty consistently in the low 60s) and then on to Australia, where July and August were (despite being mostly a little warmer than the Seattle area!) winter.
July 14, 2010
When I was midway through 10th grade I became “foreign correspondent” for my high school newspaper. This title I achieved because my family moved to Australia for nine months while my father took a sabbatical at the Australian National University in Canberra. So I started 10th grade over again at school there, where I enjoyed basking in the relatively popular international image of Americans (those were good times). Somewhere I have a copy of the four or five stories I sent back – one in particular I remember interviewing my peers about their impressions of Americans.
June 30, 2010
My family and I are once again located at our favorite summer marine biology research station (our “summer camp for biologists”) through mid-July. Not only is it a research facility, but the marine station also offers summer intensive courses in different areas of marine biology, mostly for graduate students but a few advanced undergrads and some postdocs participate too.
June 16, 2010
I didn’t write last week because I was overwhelmed in getting ready for our annual migration west. We spend the summer months doing research, writing, traveling and visiting our west coast-located parents and extended family. Especially because we live so far from family, this summer flexibility is one of the greatest perks of an academic career, as far as I’m concerned (I’ve blogged about this before).
May 26, 2010
Yesterday my 5th grader came home from school and did a happy “no homework” dance. Her afterschool class that day has finished for the semester, and she had the afternoon free! She wanted to celebrate with a playdate (everyone uses this word, but it makes me cringe) and busily started calling friends to invite them over.

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