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Hockert earns promotion at Cumberlands


Williamsburg, KY- University of the Cumberlands (UC) announces that Dr. Andrew Hockert, Assistant Professor of Biology, has been recently promoted from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor. Hockert joined the University of the Cumberlands’ faculty in the fall of 2007.

Hockert was graduated from McMurry University in Abilene, Texas in 2000 with a BS in Biology. He received his PhD in 2007 in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center graduate school of Biomedical Sciences in Lubbock, Texas. While completing his doctorate he worked as an adjunct professor of Biology at Wayland Baptist University in Lubbock Texas in 2006 and 2007 before coming to UC shortly afterwards.

“It feels good to be promoted,” said Hockert. “It is a nice honor to have the last six years of my work here recognized.”

Hockert’s area of expertise involves three distinct areas: regulation of gene expression, cancer, and RNA processing. Regulation of gene expression involves understanding primarily how genes are controlled through proteins called transcription factors and how the various transcription factors all work together in order to ensure the correct levels and times for gene expression. His cancer research has been mainly into how cancer cells break away from their normal genetic controls and how cancer develops.

Hockert credits his drive and motivation to succeed to his grandfather. He says he showed him what it truly meant to be passionate about life and his career. He showed Hockert the definition of a hard worker and expected the same from him. Hockert learned at an early age from his grandfather that he had to be dedicated, knowledgeable, and determined in order to be successful in life and in a career. His grandfather’s advice proved to be true.

“One way I feel I am successful in the classroom is by making sure everything is well organized for the students,” explained Hockert. “The information I present to them must also be organized, clear, and I must present the lessons and material to the students in a relatable manner.”

Hockert is currently in the process of working to receive a National Science Foundation grant for UC to help foster students’ learning. He also had a book chapter published in January 2014 in the Journal of Biological Chemistry titled, “Interaction, Nuclear Localization, and Polyadenylation”. Hockert is constantly exploring new ideas and information in his field of study and searching for ways to effectively relate knowledge to his students and fellow biologists. His work and attribute to UC have been exceptional.

“I have been a part of University of the Cumberlands for a while now and I really think it is a wonderful place to work and learn,” said Hockert.

The requirements for promotion at UC include evidence of effective teaching and substantial professional growth as well as service for the required number of years. Faculty members seeking promotion are also required to compose a narrative explaining their teaching philosophy. They must also collect letters of recommendation from supporting faculty and students and appear before the Tenure and Promotions Committee for an interview.

Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction, which currently offers four undergraduate degrees more than 40 major fields of study; ten pre-professional programs; ten graduate degrees distributed over eight areas, including two doctorates and seven master’s degrees; certifications in education; and online programs. For more information, visit