Initial Publication Date: January 9, 2009

2009-2010 Follow-On Workshop Leaders

In the fall of 2008, these geoscientists were selected to bring ideas and materials from On the Cutting Edge to new audiences.

Britt Argow, Wellesley College

An Assistant Professor of Geosciences at Wellesley College, Britt enjoys developing experimental pedagogical approaches in undergraduate classes at every level, and recently received an award for innovative teaching. Her research on coastal sedimentology and processes involves students of varying backgrounds and goals in field and laboratory observations, measurements and analyses. Prior to coming to Wellesley, Britt taught for three years at a two-year college, an experience that continues to inform her teaching and research goals.

Rachel Beane, Bowdoin College

Rachel is an Associate Professor of Geology who has taught ten years at Bowdoin College and served as department chair. She has been a co-leader for Cutting Edge Early Career and Career Prep workshops. Her introductory and upper-level undergraduate courses emphasize field- and instrument-based laboratories and writing; every class includes an authentic research project. Her research interests include convergent margin processes, ultrahigh-pressure metamorphism, and microstructural studies using electron backscatter diffraction.

Susan Eriksson, UNAVCO

Susan Eriksson is the Education and Outreach Director for UNAVCO, an NSF facility supporting high precision GPS for the study of crustal deformation. Dr. Eriksson was faculty in the Department of Geosciences at Virginia Tech for 22 years and served as the first director of the Virginia Tech Museum of Natural History for 11 years. Several inquiry based projects resulted in wide dissemination, nation recognition, and publication.

Syed Hasan, University of Missouri - Kansas City

Syed Hasan received his PhD from Purdue in engineering and environmental geology in 1973 and is serving as Professor of Geology and Director of the Center for Applied Environmental Research in the Department of Geosciences at the University of Missouri–Kansas City. His teaching and research interests are in the areas of Waste Management and Medical Geology.

Syed is serving as an honorary theme editor for the "Engineering Geology, Environmental Geology and Mineral Economics" section of UNESCO's Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America, and Life Fellow of the Geological Society of India. He was convener of the GSA Pardee Symposium on "Medical Geology" (2004).

Syed is recipient of the Purdue University, Department of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences' Outstanding Alumnus Award (2005); U.S. EPA Region VII Educator's Environmental Excellence Award (2000); and the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists' Claire P. Holdredge Award (1998) for his textbook Geology and Hazardous Waste Management (Prentice Hall, 1996). He is a licensed geologist in Missouri.

Kaatje Kraft, Mesa Community College

Kaatje is a residential geology faculty member at Mesa Community College in Mesa, AZ. For all of the introductory geology classes she teaches, her primary goal is to create geoscience literate citizens. She works to do this by employing active learning techniques, integrating writing and reflection into student learning, and engaging students with content that is relevant for students' goals.

Kaatje has attended many different Cutting Edge Workshops, and helped to facilitate the Metacognition workshop. She is involved in many collaborative projects and research on topics ranging from integrating nature of science into the geoscience curriculum to better understanding student attitudes and motivations in introductory geoscience courses.

Mark Leckie , University of Massachusetts - Amherst

Professor of Geology, University of Massachusetts. Co-led the scientific instruction of the JOI/IODP School of Rock expedition and co-taught the related workshops in the US, Israel, and Italy. Leckie is a marine micropaleontologist and specializes in paleoceanography, particularly reconstructing ocean-climate history of the past 120 million years. He has participated in 6 DSDP/ODP scientific expeditions. Leckie has served on the Education Subcommittee of USAC, as well as other service panels of the ODP. He has served as an associate editor of the Geology, Paleoceanography, and the Journal of Foraminiferal Research, and is past-president of the Cushman Foundation for Foraminiferal Research. Leckie is a co-author of a classroom activity book: Investigating the Oceans, an Interactive Guide to the Science of Oceanography. His teaching responsibilities include: Introductory Oceanography; History of the Earth; Introductory Field Methods; Paleoceanography; and Marine Micropaleontology.

Shelley Olds, UNAVCO

Shelley is a Science Education Specialist in UNAVCO's Education and Outreach program. Her primary responsibilities include developing free educational materials that use geodetic data and data products for undergraduate and secondary Earth science courses, providing professional development opportunities for K-12, college and university faculty, and managing the web content for UNAVCO E&O. Shelley facilitates collaborations with scientists, educators, and UNAVCO's partner organizations to discover community needs and create educational projects to meet their needs.

Wayne Powell, Brooklyn College

Wayne Powell is an Associate Professor and Chair of Geology at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. Wayne has received several grants from NSF (GeoEd, GK12, STEP) and the New York State Department of Education that focus on the design of earth science curricula and professional development for undergraduates, graduate students, and earth science teachers that integrate urban resources, urban priorities, and community partnerships. He is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Geoscience Education. His scientific research applies principles of petrology to broader field-based problems such as the timing of metallic ore deposits and the mineralogocal mechanisms of exceptional fossil preservation.

Cindy Shellito, University of Northern Colorado

Cindy is an Assistant Professor of Meteorology who has taught meteorology, climatology, and paleoclimatology courses at UNC for the past 5 years. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of California – Santa Cruz, where her work focused on understanding the warm climate of the Early Eocene (50 million years ago) using numerical global climate models. She enjoys finding ways to integrate numerical models and model output into courses at all levels. Presently, she is continuing to pursue her research interests in paleoclimate modeling, but also has an interest in students' preconceptions of the atmosphere, weather, and climate. She has participated in several Cutting Edge workshops and presently co-facilitates a geoscience education research interest group at UNC.

Kristen St. John, James Madison University

Associate Professor of Geology and Environmental Science, James Madison University. Co-led the scientific instruction of the JOI/IODP School of Rock (SOR) expedition and cotaught the related 2006 GSA workshop on Using Authentic Scientific Ocean Drilling Data for Earth Systems Science Inquiry. St. John is a marine sedimentologist and specializes in high latitude paleoclimate records, particularly reconstructing ice-rafting histories, and has published >10 peer-reviewed papers in this field. She has participated in 3 ODP/IODP scientific expeditions, most recently as a sedimentologist with the Arctic Coring Expedition. St. John was formerally on the Education Subcommittee of the U.S. Science Advisory Committee on Scientific Ocean Drilling (USAC), is the executive associate editor of Curriculum and Instruction for the Journal of Geoscience Education, and past-president of the Geoscience Education Division of GSA. Her teaching responsibilities include: Introductory Oceanography; Earth Systems, Cycles, and Human Impact (i.e., climate change); Earth Science for Teachers, and Physical Geology.

David Steer , University of Akron

David is an Associate Professor of Geophysics at the University of Akron in Ohio. Much of Dave's education research has centered on evaluating teaching methods and student learning in large, introductory earth science classes for non-majors. He has researched a variety of active learning techniques including electronic student response systems employing peer instruction, student-manipulated physical models, lecture tutorials and cooperative learning. He is the President of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers and has participated as a workshop leader and participant in several Cutting Edge workshops. His scientific research interests include investigating environmental problems that can be addressed using multi-channel resistivity and GPR.