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I earned a BA degree at the University of Connecticut with a major in Botany and then studied biochemistry at UConn receiving a Master of Science degree. From there I went to work for the departments of Pharmacology, Psychiatry and Clinical Chemistry at Yale University Medical School being in the first group of scientists to study the pharmacokinetics (changes in blood concentrations) of cocaine in human subjects. Following this research, I went to the Laboratory of Human Reproduction and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School to analyze carbohydrate structure utilizing gas chromatography, high pressure liquid chromatography and mass spectroscopy. Influenced by an ethnobotanical course I took at Harvard with the eminent ethnobotanist Richard Evans Shultes, I signed on to an ethnobotanical research expedition, sailing from Puerto Rico to Western Samoa in the South Pacific aboard an 80 foot chunk rigged research vessel. Returning to the US, I obtained a research position at Weil Cornell Medical College studying the pulmonary physiology of trauma and enrolled in the Graduate Evolutionary Biology program at the City University of New York and the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) where I studied a group of fishes in the Ichthyology Department at the AMNH and graduated with a Ph.D. I became interested in fish scales and made some unique scanning electron and light micrographs which I used to characterize groups of fishes. While a graduate student and shortly after, I taught courses at the City University of New York in anatomy and physiology, cell biology and computer programming. The past seventeen years I worked as a high school science teacher for the Department of Education of the City of New York and retired last December. During the early part of this endeavor, I took education courses with the College of Saint Rose, Brooklyn College, Baruch College and New York Institute of Technology in order to obtain a New York State teaching license.
Throughout my tenure as a high school teacher and college professor, I have tutored many types of student with different abilities and backgrounds, helping them to past tests, regent’s exams, lab practicals and courses. Many of my student went on to start vocations, attend college, study medicine and veterinary medicine and become doctors or nurses. This experience has taught me how to develop and explain difficult concepts but also how to encourage students to get interested in their studies with an appreciation that their efforts and hard work will be rewarded. Subjects that I am comfortable tutoring include biology, chemistry, biochemistry, earth science, physics, anatomy and physiology, cell biology and zoology. My favorite subjects are biology and physics. I feel that physics should be the foundation subject in science because it explains the abstract concept of energy best and physics labs remarkably illustrate how mathematics is applied in science. Thus, the traditional course sequence in high school of biology–chemistry-physics should be reversed to physics-chemistry-biology. In any case, I recognize the utility of the traditional approach and have a tool box full of examples which make it easier for biology students to understand difficult concepts such as energy or ph.
Interests outside academia include fly fishing, organic gardening and cooking. I feel there is nothing more rewarding than preparing an outdoor meal of vegetables grown in your garden with fresh fish, caught on flies you tied.

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Joel’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Connecticut - Bachelor in Arts, Botany

Graduate Degree: City University of New York - PHD, Evolutionary Biology


fishing, fly fishing, fly tying, organic gardening, cooking, auto mechanics, camping

Tutoring Subjects


Anatomy & Physiology



College Biology

College Chemistry

College Physics

Earth Science


Environmental Science

High School Biology

High School Chemistry

High School Physics

Life Sciences

Middle School Science

Physical Science




Test Prep

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