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Madhav Nepal




Office Building

Edgar S. McFadden Biostress Lab



Mailing Address

McFadden Biostress Laboratory 252C
Biology & Microbiology-Box 2140D
University Station
Brookings, SD 57007


I am a passionate educator with teaching experience of over 30 years. My teaching journey began right after my 10th grade in Nepal and I have taught all levels of students from preK-20. My research group is interested in projects ranging from natural history to molecular mechanisms related to stress regulation in plants. Being one of the first-generation college and school students, I believe in making a difference through excellence in teaching and research as well as leading by example to inspire and engage next generation of students.


• Ph.D. (Biology) Kansas State University, USA
• HBX-CORE, Harvard Business School, Harvard University, USA
• M.S. (Biology), University of Northern Iowa, USA
• B.Sc. (Biology/Botany), Tribhuvan University, Nepal

Academic Interests

Systematics, bioinformatics, comparative genomics and plant population genetics

Academic Responsibilities

• General Biology-Honors (BIOL 151/L; Enrollment capped at 70 )
• General Botany (BOT 201/201L: Spring, High Enrollment Course)
• Biology Survey II (BIOL 103/103L; Spring, until 2012)
• Evolution (BIOL 373; Fall, until 2015)
• 7-12 Science Methods (SEED 413; Fall)
• Molecular Plant Physiology (BIOS /PS 664; Spring, until 2018)

Committee Activities

Department of Biology and Microbiology
o Curriculum Committee (2012-2016, 2021-2022);
o Executive Committee (2022-current);
o Tenure and Promotion Committee (Chair, 2021-2022)
o Graduate Thesis and Dissertation Advisory Committees
o Faculty Search Committees

College Level
o Internal Advisory Board- College of Natural Sciences (2020-2022)
o Academic Appeal Committee for Teachers Certification Program (Dept of Teaching, Learning and Leadership; 2014-current)
o Teacher Education Faculty (TEF; 2009-current)
o Honors College Faculty Advisory Committee (2014-2020)
o College of Education and Human Sciences -Admission and Scholastic Standards Committee (2014-Current)

University Level
o Faculty Senate President (2021-2022)
o Faculty Senate Vice President (2020 -2021)
o Graduate Student Council Advisor (2021-Current)
o F. O. Butler Foundation Trustee (2019-2022)
o Higher Learning Commission-NCA Accreditation Steering Committee (2018-19)
o Center for Enhancement of Teaching and Learning (CETL) Advisory Council (2016-2020)
o Administration Search Committee- member (2)
o University Committees
• Tenure and Promotion Committee (2022-Current)
• Committee on Committees (Chair, 2020-2021)
• Academic Affairs (2012-13)
• Academic Appeals (2018-2020)
• Faculty Budget (2021-2022)
• Intercollegiate Athletics Board (2018-2019)
• International Affairs (Chair- 2016-2018; member 2015-2016)

South Dakota Board of Regents (System Academic Affairs)
o Natural Science Discipline Council (Chair, 2018-2022)
o Biology Discipline Council (Ad-hoc; Fall 2013)
o State Representative, WICHE- Interstate Passport Initiative (Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education---Natural Sciences Group, 2015-2022)

South Dakota
o Department of Education- Science Advisory Council (2017-2019)

Botanical Society of America
o Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion-Impact Award sub-committee (Chair, 2021-2022)

Awards and Honors

• SDSU Inaugural Global Achievement Award (Office of International Affairs, 2022)
• FO Butler Excellence in Teaching (2021)
• Samuel Noel Postlethwait Award for Outstanding Service to Teaching Section of the Botanical Society of America (2018)
• Honor Society of Agriculture (Gamma Sigma Delta) Past President Recognition (2017)
• Honor Society of Agriculture Distinguished Service Award (2017)
• Edward Patrick Hogan Award For Teaching Excellence (2016)
• Sigma Xi Past President Recognition (2015)
• National Academies Education Fellow in the Life Sciences (2015 National Academies Northstar Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education in Biology)
• Gamma Sigma Delta Teaching Award (SD Honor Society of Agriculture; 2014)
• Tom Cheesbrough Excellence in Teaching Award (Dept. of Biology and Microbiology, SDSU; 2014)
• Lee Olson Travel Award (Dept. of Biology and Biology, SDSU; 2014)
• 2014 Outstanding Faculty Award nominee (Biology and Microbiology Graduate Student Association)
• 2014 CE Bessey Teaching Award nominee (Botanical Society of America)


• USDA NIFA 7Gen-FnA-iLEARN (Nepal et al. 2021-2025)
• NSF RCN-UBE: The Wokini Undergraduate Biology Education Network (Heiberger & Nepal; 2021-2022)
• NSF Synthetic Biology (Butzin, Nepal, Fernandez; 2019-2024)
• NSF REMAST Phase-III (Vestal, Nepal, Browning, Miller and White; 2020-2025)
• USDA-NIFA; FAST-REEU (Nepal, Bott-Knutson, Janaswamy, Mathew and White; 2018-2022)
• South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotional Council (with F. Mathew, 2017-2018)
• USDA-NIFA; iLEARN (Nepal, White, Browning and Miller; 2016-2019)
• USDA-NIFA; AES Hatch Fund (Nepal; 2013-2018)
• DOE/SDBOR; Science and Technology Resources for Engagement Activity Modules (STREAM) (Browning, Nepal and Miller; 2015/2016)
• NSF-REMAST Robert Noyce Scholarship Program –Phase II (Vestal, Nepal, Browning, Miller and Bertolini; 2014-2016)
• South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotional Council (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016).
• Department of Education-SD Board of Reagents (SETI^2, SETI^2-PhaseII)(Browning, Nepal and Miller; NCLB, Title II Grant) 2012/13 and 2013/2014
• NSF-REMAST Robert Noyce Scholarship Program (Vestal, Nepal, Browning, Emo and Miller; 2007-2012)
• SDSU Academic and Scholarly Excellence Initiative (Miller, Nepal, Browning, Vestal and Emo; 2010-2011)
• USDA Forest Service (2010-2012)
• SDSU Research Scholarship Fund 2010 (2009-2010)

Professional Memberships

• Botanical Society of America-Teaching Section Chair (Elected; 2015-2018)
• Botanical Society of America- Vice Chair & Program Director (2012-2015)
• American Society of Plant Biologists-member
• Sigma Xi Chapter President (2013-2014)
• SD Honor Society of Agriculture President (2015-2016)
• AAAS Member (2014-current)

Creative Activities

• Founding Faculty Member of Institute for STEM Education Enhancement (ISEE@SDSTATE)
• Founding Faculty Adviser of Bio-Micro Graduate Student Association (BMGSA)
• Founding Faculty Advisor of SDSU Graduate Student Council (GSC)

Area(s) of Research

Plant Systematics, Molecular Phylogenetics and Comparative Genomics

Applications of Research

• Advancement of knowledge (Plant Evolution)
• Plant species identification and management (Biodiversity and Conservation):
• Stress responsive gene identification and characterization (Crop Improvement)