Initial Publication Date: April 13, 2020

Team and Institutional Context

Catherine Etter

Catherine earned a B.S. in Biology from Providence College, a M.L.A. in Biology from Harvard, a M.S. in Emergency Management from Massachusetts Maritime Academy, and a Ph.D. (dissertation on sustainable drinking water) from Salve Regina University. She worked in diverse environments such as Superfund sites, wetlands, OSHA trainings, aquaculture, and analytical laboratories for Analytical Balance Corp., Clean Harbors, New England Testing Lab, Barnstable County Extension Services, Jacobs Engineering and Springborn Lab. She worked on Native American public health issues, hazardous waste problems, aquaculture, and paleontology projects in coastal Massachusetts and the Southwest for the Wampanoag and Navajo tribes. Catherine incorporates online activities, virtual labs, field trips, and multimedia in her curriculum delivery. She appreciates professional learning opportunities such as workshops and webinars. She described the program at Cape Cod in this essay for a workshop in 2012.


Catherine teaches Environmental Science, Earth System Science, Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Instrumentation, Survey of Environmental Technology, OSHA Hazwoper, and supervises internships.

Audrey Russano

Audrey is a GIS Analyst for the Cape Cod Mosquito Control Project where she is responsible for the creation, development and maintenance of spatial data and applications associated with GIS and the spatial environment. She is also an adjunct at Cape Cod Community College where she teaches GIS. She received her MBA from the University of Phoenix, her BA in Media Studies from Hunter College, CUNY and an AS in Environmental Technology with a certificate in GIS from Cape Cod Community College. She is a retired Lieutenant Colonel and spent 31 years in the Army/Army Reserves. She served in Afghanistan in 2003 as the Chief of Personnel Policy for Coalition Joint Task Force Phoenix. She was certified by the US Army Command and General Staff College as an instructor for the Intermediate Level Education course for credentialing field grade officers. The certification was in Kolb's Experiential Learning Model, which addressed four different learning styles: Reflectors (Diverger), Theorists (Assimilator), Pragmatists (Converger), and Activists (Accommodator). She is certified in Working with Youth-at-Risk from California State Hayward continuing education program. She spent 14 years working with at-risk youth ages 17 to 24 years old. This was a work and academic program providing young adults with an opportunity to achieve their GED or High School Diploma while learning life, work, and citizenship skills. An important part of the work day, was incorporating academics with the conservation and service projects.


Audrey teaches Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Previous Team Members

Ed Hoopes

Ed earned a B.S. and M.S. in Wildlife Biology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He has worked on a variety of projects in avian ecology, endangered & threatened species, wetland ecology, and resource planning. He has studied raptor migration ecology, conducted several studies on the ecology of Piping Plovers, Least Terns, and Laughing Gulls, conducted research on birdstrikes at JFK International Airport, and reviewed and examined impacts of oil and gas activities on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf. For many years Ed worked as a biologist for the National Park Service, and a Conservation Commissioner for the Town of Yarmouth (MA) implementing the regulations of the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act. He has taught Environmental Science at Cape Cod Community College for the past 15 years. His interest in the environment and desire to broaden student learning opportunities led him to develop and teach 2 new courses in general ecology and bird biology.


Ed Teaches Environmental Science, General Ecology, Coastal Ecology, and Bird Biology.

Elizabeth Grefé

Liz Grefé has taught Environmental Science since 2004. She earned her B.S. in Biology from Loyola University and a Master of Administrative Science (Business) from Johns Hopkins University. She believes that the path to sustainability lies in the cooperation of science, business, government, and non-government organizations, as well as ongoing, objective public education. Her primary geological interests are the clean-up and protection of soil and water. She has particular interests in the removal of Agent Orange from soils in Vietnam as well as the protection of Cape Cod's fragile soil, groundwater aquifer, kettle ponds, and coastline. In the classroom and in lab, she focuses on teaching students to analyze and interpret environmental and human-health data.


Liz Grefé teaches Environmental Science.

Administrative Involvement

  • Donald Crampton, Dean, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (2017-2019)

Institutional Context

Cape Cod Community College

Institution: Cape Cod Community College serves the entire Cape, the islands of Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, and the greater Plymouth area. The college serves over 7000 students annually, 71% of whom attend part time and 59% of whom are female. 44% of the student body is over 24 years old.

Geoscience program: The geoscience program at Cape Cod Community College includes Environmental Science, Oceanography, Earth Systems Science, and Geography and has 1 full-time and 12 adjunct instructors. The majority of the students enrolled in the geoscience courses are fulfilling their A.A. general education graduation requirements. Approximately 600 students enroll in the geoscience classes annually, with Environmental Science, Earth Science, and Oceanography being the most popular. They offer a couple of geoscience certificates that bundle 4-5 courses together that provide students the skills to work in the field and a terminal A.S. in Environmental Technology with very few students (annually graduates 2-5). Cape Cod Community College's geoscience program is housed in a few different departments. The Department of Science and the Engineering Department oversee most of the geoscience courses while geography is in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences in a different division,

Institutional demographic data is from IPEDS the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, U.S. Department of Education, typically for the 2014-15 year as available.

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