Professor of Biology, College of Science, Health, and the Liberal Arts
A.B., in Biology/Chemistry, Duke University, 1961
Ph.D. in Molecular Biology, University of Pennsylvania, 1970
Academic and Research Interests:
Developmental genetics, Pre-Medical Studies
PA Program Courses Taught:
Microbiology, Immunology and Genetics
Edward Dowden joined the university in 1969. His first task was to introduce biology into the college’s curriculum. This first biology course was one of three choices of science courses for the school’s business majors. His next task was to develop a pre-medical studies program which started in 1972 as the “Life Science Curriculum”. Under his guidance, every class from 1972-1981 had graduates enter medical school. In 1995 the Life Science Program was eliminated in favor of a pre-medical option in the Biology program, which then evolved again in 2004 into the Pre-Medical Studies Major. In the early 1990s, Dr. Dowden, having seen the model in action at his alma mater, Duke, encouraged University Administration to consider starting a physician assistant program. He was responsible for the committee developed curriculum for this new PA Program and hired the first two PA Program faculty members, Dr. Matt Baker and Michael Rackover. The first class of PA students graduated in 1997.
Dr. Dowden continues to train both future PAs and physicians by teaching Biology and Genetics at an undergraduate level, and co-teaches the Genetics component of Microbiology, Immunology, and Genetics. In his spare time Dr. Dowden enjoys spending time with his family and traveling back to North Carolina to spend time in the Outer Banks.