- Breast Cancer Research
- Molecular Research
FGCU Faculty Member since 2014
When Dr. Rhodes was growing up, she was amazed by what her mother was able to accomplish as an elementary school teacher. She knew that was not the path for her, but while in college, she was so impressed by her undergraduate professors that she knew she wanted to pursue a career in academia. An internship she did between her junior and senior years exposed her to molecular research and she knew that research would also be an important component of her career.
She landed at FGCU because it’s a place where she can follow both her passions, teaching and research; it’s large enough to maintain serious research, but small enough that she could still connect with her students. She also saw enormous support to integrate research and hands-on learning into the classroom.
A breast cancer biologist by training, Dr. Rhodes’ research revolves around how different compounds impact cancer cells and understanding the mechanisms that drive cancer progression. She is fascinated by how normal cells in the body suddenly go rogue and can’t stop dividing. This is what makes targeting cancer cells so difficult. So she’s looking for ways to stop that process before it ravages the body. She loves how cancer research can make a real impact in others’ lives.
At home, she has a husband and two young daughters; her students have become an extension of her family. When they get excited about something, she gets excited, too. So she’s become an advocate and mentor for students who see a need in the community and want to fill it. That is something too important to be left to chance. No matter their age, race or gender, she wants them to step up to a challenge and know their voices matters.