UHD Names Dr. Poonam Gulati Interim Director of the Center of Community Engagement and Service Learning
It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Poonam Gulati Salhotra, Ph.D., as the interim director of Center of Community Engagement and Service Learning. The Center is housed in the Office of the Provost and its purpose is to build partnerships of knowledge and resources with the public and private sectors; enrich and enhance curriculum, teaching and learning; prepare students to become engaged citizens; strengthen their democratic values and civic responsibility; address critical societal issues; and contribute to the public good.
Dr. Gulati has a doctorate in microbiology and immunology from Cornell University Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. She joined UHD in 1998 as an assistant professor and was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 2004. Since 1999, Dr. Gulati has engaged students in community outreach initiatives. Her students have conducted hands-on science activities at elementary schools through the student club, The Leeuwenhoek Society. Since 2010, Dr. Gulati has incorporated service learning in the classroom impacting more than 100 students each year. In addition to engaging UHD students, the service learning activity has benefitted the community of elementary students, teachers and parents. Dr. Gulati also has brought the community to UHD by hosting large science symposia with her students for high school student audiences. Additionally, her students have created health brochures in different languages for distribution at community clinics. Dr Gulati is a board member of iEducate USA and has helped recruit UHD students to tutor in elementary classrooms. Dr. Gulati firmly believes that such efforts make a strong impact on student learning and engagement at the University.
Dr. Gulati has presented her community engagement initiatives at local, regional and national conferences, and has published relevant articles. She has received several internal community engagement grants and is actively engaged in expanding her grant activity by writing large external grant proposals. She has been recognized for her efforts to engage students through curricular and co-curricular activities with the UHD Excellence in Teaching and two Excellence in Service Awards.