Mission and Values > Programs > Vincentian Mission Institute > Current VMI Cohort > Dorothy Kozlowski

Dorothy Kozlowski


Dorothy Kozlowski joined DePaul in 2000.  She is a Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and Director of the Neuroscience Program at DePaul University.  She received her B.A. in Psychology from Knox College, M.A. and Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin, and completed postdoctoral fellowships in Neurosurgery at UCLA and Neurobiology at Northwestern University.

Her teaching and research focus is in neuroscience.  Specifically, Dr. Kozlowski is interested in how the brain tries to repair itself following traumatic brain injury through neuroplasticity.  She, her students, and collaborators also study how to enhance brain repair through therapeutic approaches and why repeat concussions result in long-term neurological deficits. Her research has been published in a variety of journals and book chapters, and has been supported by the National Institutes of Health and the United States Department of Defense. Dr. Kozlowski teaches courses in neuroscience in the Biology and Neuroscience Departments as well as in the liberal arts program.  She received the Excellence in Teaching Award from DePaul in 2010 and the “Educator of the Year” award from the Faculty for Undergraduate Neuroscience, an international organization, in 2011.

In addition to teaching and research Dr. Kozlowski works with DePaul students and the Concussion Legacy Foundation to offer concussion education presentations to youth in the Chicago area.  These presentations are designed to teach youth about the symptoms of concussion and how to play sports safely.   She is also the Past-President of  the Chicago Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience

Dorothy Kozlowski grew up on the southwest side of Chicago and currently lives in the southwest suburbs with her husband and two children.

Why DePaul

DePaul’s mission to provide education to first generation students is one of the first things that attracted me.  I am a child of Polish immigrants and the first in my family to go to college. I see myself in so many of my students.  DePaul provides first-generation students an opportunity to get an excellent education in a setting where there are students, faculty, and staff who understand what it means to be a first-generation college student and can support them along the way.  DePaul’s dedication to a teacher-scholar model is also important to me.  After spending many years working in primary research universities, I knew I wanted to join a university that valued teaching and understood how research is important in informing teaching and not as a primary endeavor.  DePaul has allowed me to work with undergraduates in the research lab and teach them to be scientists and not just technicians. This is something I truly value.


DePaul’s identity as a Catholic University with a Vincentian Mission is one I have always known, yet never truly fully understood.  Learning more about the lives of St. Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac and how they have influenced our university over time is something that I am looking forward to.  I am also excited to incorporate the Vincentian mission more actively in my leadership roles at DePaul in the future.