Dean's Office


Reception: (858) 82  2-4622


M-F, 8:00am - 4:00pm


Natural Sciences Building, Suite 6205
Nearest intersection: Scholars Dr S & La Jolla Shores Drive
Closest Visitor Parking: Meters in Parking Lot P103

Mailing Address

Biological Sciences Dean's Office
9500 Gilman Drive, Mail Code: 0376
La Jolla, CA 92093-0376

Academic Leadership

  • Andrew Chisholm
    Andrew Chisholm, Ph.D.
    Associate Dean
    (858) 24 6-1783
    (858) 24 6-1783
  • Laurie Smith
    Laurie Smith, Ph.D.
    Director of Undergraduate Education
    (858) 82 2-2531
    (858) 82 2-2531
    Leads and coordinates the undergraduate education mission of the Division, including planning and staffing of courses, appointment of instructors, and curriculum development. Provides oversight for activities of the DO/Bio (Discovering Opportunities in Biology) Center, CCE/Bio (Center for Continuing Education in Biosciences), and other student-centered activities within the Division.
  • Gentry Patrick
    Gentry Patrick, Ph.D.
    Director of Mentorship and Diversity
    (858) 53 4-4838
    (858) 53 4-4838
    As Director of Mentorship and Diversity, Dr. Patrick drives efforts to bridge the Division and UC San Diego campus to the San Diego community, build collaborative partnerships with key community partners, improve upon diversity among students and faculty on campus, and create a more inclusive environment within the Division of Biological Sciences.

Administrative Staff

  • John C. Bauer
    John C. Bauer
    Assistant Dean and Executive Officer
    (858) 53 4-8202
    (858) 53 4-8202
    Responsible for budgetary and fiscal matters, space planning, and analysis and policy development; consults on academic personnel policy, divisional safety program, capital planning, and divisional administrative questions and organizational issues.
  • Melanie Ridenour
    Melanie Ridenour
    Senior Personnel Analyst
    (858) 53 4-1967
    (858) 53 4-1967
    Serves as academic personnel point of contact for the division; reviews and analyzes all academic personnel actions; provides counsel to the Dean, Section Chairs, faculty and staff regarding current, proposed and new academic personnel policies, procedures and practices.  Melanie also coordinates endowed chair appointments and works on various special projects.
  • Alex Tea
    Alex Tea
    Dean’s Office Executive Assistant
    (858) 53 4-4281
    (858) 53 4-4281
    Alex provides direct support for the Dean, assists the Dean with the operations of the Dean's Office, and coordinates Dean's Office meetings and activities.
  • Victoria Berdin
    Victoria Berdin
    Administrative and Events Coordinator
    (858) 82 2-4622
    (858) 82 2-4622
    Victoria provides general front desk and administrative support for the Dean’s Office and coordinates a variety of special events and programs.

External Relations / Communications / Development Staff

  • Mario Aguilera
    Mario Aguilera
    Director of Communications
    (858) 82 2-5148
    (858) 82 2-5148
    Serves as the communications director for Biological Sciences; publicizes research and other features of the division through news releases, articles, interviews, videos, and social media.

  • Christopher Sickels
    Christopher Sickels
    Senior Director of Development
    (858) 24 6-5705
    (858) 24 6-5705
    Chris serves as the lead philanthropic gift officer for Biological Sciences, providing leadership, management, and overall program strategy in planning, coordinating, and implementing fundraising activities for the Dean, Faculty Members, volunteers, and other key collaborative partners for the Division. His mission is to build a comprehensive development program that will engage local, regional, national, and international donors and alumni to actively participate in personalized partnerships that will further the mission and strategic goals of the Division to best serve our students and maximize our broad impact in society.
  • Aiza Oliva
    Aiza Oliva
    Development Coordinator
    (858) 24 6-5305
    (858) 24 6-5305
    Aiza supports fundraising activities, donor relations, stewardship, and events on behalf of the Division.
  • Sarah Turner
    Sarah R. Turner
    Director of Alumni Engagement
    (858) 53 4-5635
    (858) 53 4-5635
    Sarah's goal is to cultivate and sustain meaningful connections with Biological Sciences' valued alumni both locally and regionally through programming, in-person visits, events, and activities. Her mission is to bring value to alumni by providing opportunities for them to re-connect to UC San Diego and the Division of Biological Sciences.