The foundation of my teaching philosophy is centered on three goals:
(1) to spark curiosity and to make students eager to find out more about Earth’s dynamic systems, (2) to help them to do so by enabling them to develop scientific questions and by exposing them to a variety of tools and approaches, and (3) to integrate learning about local environmental issues and climate change related topics that matter the most to students and their communities. Using these goals, I also strive to inspire students to consider the variety of disciplines and wide range of careers that an Earth Science education can prepare them for. In my teaching, I also challenge students to read both popular articles and scientific literature critically, and to become comfortable with science writing and science communication to both expert and broad audiences. Finally, I aim to incorporate the field/outdoors in my teaching as it can be an especially effective and stimulating classroom that allows students to directly engage in the scientific process.
Service & Mentorship
I am committed to building an equitable, diverse, and inclusive geoscience community, to service, and to effective mentorship. At present, the geosciences remain the least diverse discipline within STEM with little to no progress in increasing diversity, particularly at the Ph.D. and faculty level, over the last 40 years . Our community is missing out on talent that exists within excluded and minoritized groups, thus limiting the science and its impact [e.g., 3, 4]. In addition, in the context of climate change research, the voices of people who are expected to be the hardest hit by climate impacts have been largely excluded . Confronting this reality and advocating for systematic and institutional change has become a high priority for me in my academic career.
I consider participation in leadership and service roles a vital component of my work as a climate scientist. Before pursuing my Ph.D., I worked as a teacher, educational writer, and visual artist. These experiences allowed me to build expertise in a wide range of ways to communicate climate science and have driven my outreach and service activities over the past several years.
As a mentor, I strive to recognize and acknowledge the strengths that different life experiences bring to scientific interests, questions, and approaches [e.g., 1]. I also strive to make the geosciences relevant to more people by encouraging a significant devotion of time to local community outreach and engagement, service, and profesional development [e.g., 3]. I actively support the building of partnerships with community organizations, with local schools and teachers in bringing climate science topics and awareness of geoscience career paths into their classrooms, and with nonscientific experts, industries, and policymakers .
Batchelor, R. L., et al. "Reimagining STEM workforce development as a braided river." Eos 102 (2021).
Berhe, Asmeret Asefaw, et al. "Scientists from historically excluded groups face a hostile obstacle course." Nature Geoscience (2021): 1-3.
Bernard, Rachel E., and Emily HG Cooperdock. "No progress on diversity in 40 years." Nature Geoscience 11.5 (2018): 292-295.
AlShebli, Bedoor K., Talal Rahwan, and Wei Lee Woon. "The preeminence of ethnic diversity in scientific collaboration." Nature communications 9.1 (2018): 1-10.