In Memory: Laurel Appel, Adjunct Associate Professor of Biology, Passes Away

According to the Durham-Middlefield Patch, Laurel Appel, Adjunct Associate Professor of Biology, has passed away at the age of 50. In addition to her parents, siblings, and children, Dr. Appel, who lived in Durham, is survived by her husband of 20 years, Professor of Biology Michael Weir. The online obituary notes that Dr. Appel also directed the Ronald E. McNair Program at Wesleyan:

Laurel Frances Appel was born July 13, 1962, in Princeton, NJ, and grew up in Urbana, IL. She graduated from Oberlin College in 1984 and received a Ph.D. in genetics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1993, when she moved to Connecticut. She married Michael Weir in 1993. At Wesleyan, she directed the Ronald E. McNair Program, which supports and nurtures first-generation college students and students in underrepresented groups for entry into graduate programs.

Dr. Appel most recently appeared in the news last month, when the Wesleyan Connection mentioned her as a speaker for “Innovations: Intersection of Art and Science,” a CFA symposium.

There will be a celebration of her life tomorrow at 3 p.m. in the Chapel. Read the obituary here.

[Durham-Middlefield Patch]

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6 thoughts on “In Memory: Laurel Appel, Adjunct Associate Professor of Biology, Passes Away

  1. McNair Scholar '11

    As a former McNair scholar, this is especially saddening. Dr. Appel spearheaded equality for students who were in one way or another disadvantaged. She worked tirelessly for them, regardless of her own circumstances, and many people, including myself, would not be where they are today if not for her and her dedication. She will be sorely missed.

  2. Marianna

    What sad news, Dr. Appel was a really sweet lady who helped me out with my lab work many times even though I wasn’t her student. :(

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