I would like to think that I have always had some sort of environmental consciousness. As a child, this amounted to things like keeping my showers under five minutes and obsessively shutting off the lights as I left a room (which may have helped the earth somewhat but mostly seemed to result in me stubbing my toes as I rooted around in the dark for the hall light).
As a student at Macalester College, I chose to minor in Environmental Studies in favor of a German Studies major, due in equal parts to my love of the language and my desire to participate in the 6 month study abroad program offered by the department. Upon graduation, I became an English teaching assistant in Austria. I was placed at an agricultural secondary school in Wieselburg, a town so small that most Austrians have never even heard of it (although many are well acquainted with Wieselburger beer). The vast majority of my students had grown up on farms, and they were bitterly disappointed to learn that, despite hailing from Nebraska, I came from the city and did not own my own tractor.
In interacting with my students, who gave presentations on such topics as the many uses of sugar beets and the most viable way to slaughter a cow, I came to realize just how far removed I and so many others like me were from the process of my own food production. I could not name the country most of my food comes from, let alone the farmers themselves. This is something that I deeply wish to help change about our society. Now, exactly how I am going to do that is something I’m eager to discover during my time at the University of Oregon.
A Queens, NY native, Emily-Bell was contemplating a career in animal medicine when Super Storm Sandy ripped through her city and tore apart the homes, lives, and communities of loved ones and neighbors. As climate change accelerates, sea levels continue to rise, as does the intensity and frequency of coastal storm events. Disasters like Sandy will happen again and without creative ecologists, resource managers, and government agencies making concerted efforts to help cities evolve to meet new challenges, public safety will remain at risk and valuable coastal ecosystems that absorb flood water will continue to vanish. Emily is now at the University of Oregon studying ways to manage natural resources within wetland ecosystems and make progressive, sustainable land use possible in the face of future sea level rise.
In examining how to improve the ecological integrity and biodiversity of disturbed urban wetlands, the restoration process itself is a valuable environmental education tool. From first-hand experience organizing post-Sandy cleanup efforts and professional work training local teens, street tree stewards, Master Composters, and gardeners, Emily has seen that resiliency is not built through bio-engineering alone. Community greening and civic participation propagate new social connections and strengthen existing webs of support that are needed in the wake of a disaster. Local environmental stewardship creates connections between neighbors before storms make landfall, when the hard work of building resilient communities helps prepare for storms in a holistic fashion.
Emily-Bell studied Political Science and History at the City University of New York, Hunter College and is an alumnus of the Aquatic Research Environmental Analytics Center at Brooklyn College. Most recently she worked as the Program Educator for the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance, leading youth development programming through dune restoration, beach stewardship, pedestrian advocacy, and scientific research mentoring. As the former NYC Compost Project Coordinator at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and the NYC Department of Sanitation, Emily-Bell also has a strong dedication to teaching New York’s community gardeners how to keep their city growing green with healthy soils. Having served as an educator with Million Trees NYC, Solar One, and the Lower East Side Ecology Center, she is well experienced working with environmental non-profits making sure urban residents have equal access to nature. In her free time, Emily-Bell gets dirty as the co-founder of a local community garden, the Roger That Garden Project, in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.
During my junior year of high school, I enrolled in Environmental Science because I was intimidated by physics, overwhelmed by chemistry, and had heard that this class included field trips. Little did I know, this course would eventually lead me to pursue a science degree as an undergraduate. After a year of studying soda bottle ecosystems, carrying around our trash in tote bags, and a series of awesome field trips (as promised) I was hooked! The lessons from this class challenged my worldview, inspired me to take action, and changed me forever. When it came time for me to declare a major in college, I chose Environmental Science and never looked back.
For the next four years I took classes from every corner of campus and got involved in a variety of projects. I enjoyed many geology field trips, spent two summers working on Orcas Island as I worked on benthic habitat maps of the San Juan Archipelago. Mid-way through college I became part of a project that was one of the most defining components of my undergraduate career. I joined an incredible team of students, staff, and faculty passionate about facilitating a campus-wide culture of sustainability at a campus not known previously known for being a leader in environmental issues. Though things started slowly at first, we’ve come along way in just under two years. This spring we were presented our work to our university President and his cabinet, who have since committed to developing Fresno State’s Sustainability Institute.
At the University of Oregon I hope to focus on two topics that are well aligned with my previous experiences, my future goals, and my interest in the overlap of traditional subjects: Environmental Education and Environmental Justice. My most meaningful experiences have been the ones in which I was able to take ownership of the project and feel that I had made a tangible difference in my community. My hope is that approaching environmental education and environmental justice through the lens of service-learning will challenge students to become leaders in their communities as well.
From my first day on Earth I have been immersed in the beauty and wonder of the natural world. For this I thank my parents. As homesteaders in rural Eastern Oregon they taught my brothers and I how to love the land and revere nature. My childhood was spent playing in the garden, caring for our cattle, and endless exploration of the streams, pastures, and mountains around our home. A passion for insect collecting lead me to work with a Forest Service entomologist throughout high school. I earned a BS in biology from Oregon State University and continued fieldwork in insect ecology across the Great Basin. As an ecologist I have studied and worked in Argentina, the Ecuadorian Amazon, the Galapagos, and Honduras. During my travels I became fascinated with different cultural perspectives on nature. My current research interests are broad, ranging from conservation biology and ethnobotany, to art and folklore. My goal at UO is to gain the skills and knowledge to be a better advocate and activist for the environment and human rights. I am project oriented and love to get my hands dirty doing meaningful work that has immediate results.
Born and raised right here in Eugene, the clear rivers, deep forests, high desert and rocky coastlines of Oregon featured prominently in my upbringing. Time spent in wilderness has always felt important, and my undergraduate studies at Colorado College were focused on the ways that religion and philosophy shape the way humans interact with and value our environment. After several years of teaching at outdoor science schools in northern California, I relocated briefly to Moab, Utah to work for the Canyonlands Field Institute, then to Hood River, Oregon where I led environmental education programs for a rural charter school. In 2007, I moved home to Eugene for a job as the executive director of the School Garden Project of Lane County, a nonprofit that helps schools create and sustain school gardens. My interests in education, natural resources management, nonprofit administration and sustainable agriculture led me to a new position in 2011, launching a Demonstration Farm at the Berggren Watershed Conservation Area on the McKenzie River. Managing habitat and water conservation priorities alongside agricultural production systems has proved to be a rich and dynamic challenge, one that I hope to continue to focus on as I transition back to the academic world. I’m specifically interested in the role that conservation incentive programs can play in fostering improved stewardship of agricultural landscapes, and in the use of conservation easements and other land-use planning tools to preserve farmland as farmland. When I’m not working, I’m usually up in the woods picking mushrooms, canoe camping in the Cascades, cross country skiing, or cooking food with my fiancée Josie and our dogs Opal and Fiona.
I have always been fascinated by the human relationship with the natural environment. It was this thirst for understanding that drove me to leave my hometown of Tampa, FL after graduating from Eckerd College, and embark on the adventure of a lifetime in Alaska. College had already opened my eyes to the global community. While volunteering and studying abroad in London, Honduras, and Iceland, I became enthralled with the many ways in which our cultures and societies interact with our local ecologies, and moreover, how those interactions evolve with natural and human-caused environmental changes. Living in Alaska and working for the National Park Service, I was able to observe these connections firsthand through the subsistence cultures of Alaska Native communities that rely on the ecosystems of the region for their livelihoods. As I became acquainted with these communities and how they are adapting to the rapidly changing climate of the Arctic, I started questioning the ways we connect with our natural resources, both in situ and from afar. It is within this framework that I hope to integrate the use of photography, film, and multimedia to explore and pioneer new approaches to understanding our human interactions with the natural world across a broader geographic spectrum. I believe visual media is a powerful tool that can help us interpret information in meaningful and accessible ways that speak across cultures, and foster opportunities for people to engage more sustainably with their local ecologies. Aside from working as a park ranger in Alaska during the summers, I can usually be found hiking somewhere with my camera in hand, birding, writing, traveling, or cooking.
Office Hours: By appointment
I spent countless days as a child wandering the woods and fields behind my family’s typical suburban home outside of Philadelphia. After growing up in suburbia, I was eager to move to a place where public transportation and walking were viable means of transportation. That eagerness led me to Washington, DC where I majored in International Studies at American University. For much of my undergraduate studies, environmental issues were not foremost on my mind, and it wasn’t until my final year that I took a course in global environmental politics. After graduating, I moved to Kampala, Uganda to work for a sport-development organization as a teacher, soccer coach, and program coordinator. I was drawn to this experience by the desire to explore the cultural and social role sport can play in a community. In Uganda, I became attracted to the way communities are shaped by environment and access to food. I’ve spent the last few years in Oakland, California working as a research and program assistant for a project that addresses literacy education in multiple subject areas. Living in Oakland, a city that simultaneously exhibits many of the promises and problems of the food system, I have begun to fully realize the important role food plays in a community. At University of Oregon, I’m looking forward to digging deeper into the relationships between community, food, and environment, and addressing issues of local food access. I’m also exciting to see what Oregon’s mountains, forests, lakes, and local farms have to offer.
Growing up near the shore of Lake Superior in Duluth, Minnesota, I had access to amazing natural resources, and definitely took advantage of them. But it wasn’t until my freshman year of undergrad at Colby College that I realized that I could actually incorporate my love of the environment into my life beyond doing activities that took me outside. I took an introductory environmental studies class, and was captivated by the topics we discussed. I was fortunate to take several classes in field ecology, including a trip to the Galapagos, and fell in love with the subject. Along the way, I gained skills in GIS while doing a summer research project on habitat modeling, and have come to highly value the benefits of spatial thinking and its applications in a variety of fields. I spent another summer working as an environmental education intern at a park in my hometown, and third working as an assistant in a trace metals analysis lab. I also decided to pursue environmental engineering, through a dual degree program with the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College. I graduated from Colby with a BA in 2011 and from Dartmouth with a BE in 2012. After graduating, I worked at an environmental consulting firm outside of DC, doing GIS analysis for US Air Force encroachment studies. At the University of Oregon, I plan to study the impacts of climate change on species distribution. Outside of work and school, I enjoy hiking, biking, rock climbing, reading, and any other adventures that come my way!
I am originally from Tampa, Florida, attended Florida Gulf Coast University two hours south in the city of Estero, and four years and a firm handshake on a stage later, my Environmental Studies degree was completed. Growing up, I was always outside, but not necessarily romping through the woods. My nature was a 120 x 80 yard soccer field that I called home, and this love continued throughout my college years as a student-athlete. With being a student-athlete, though, came a voracious appetite that could only momentarily be quelled by copious amounts of food. My family is Jamaican, and there was rarely a night in which we didn’t have a home cooked meal from the island. Cooking was commonplace in my home, and was something I quickly and happily continued in college. However, after reading an article about numerous instances of food insecurity just miles from my university, my inkling for food switched from “What am I going to eat for dinner?” to, “Don’t throw that food out – we can donate that!” A whirlwind of food soon ensued; I was running an end of the year food drive as students moved out of housing, was an intern with a local food bank, and luckily enough, was chosen attend a conference held by Real Food Challenge across the country in California, where I consequently had been catapulted into the deep end of the burgeoning food movement in colleges nationwide. The culmination of my undergraduate food experience came in the form of a study abroad course to Rancho Margot, a sustainable ranch located in El Castillo, Costa Rica, covering topics of sustainable food, society, and sense of place. When we weren’t discussing global implications of the industrialized food system, we were knee-deep in cow manure, or methodically and carefully tending to the garden beds. This course, as well as my experiences up to this point, inspired my undergraduate research, interviewing students on their relationship with sustainable dining options on-campus. At the University of Oregon, I hope to further explore the personal relationship that develops between people and the food that they consume. I’m especially interested in this relationship at the university level, where students have more independence in terms of what they choose to eat, and the role that universities play in that decision-making, from education to availability. If I’m not around anything edible, you can usually find me listening to music, biking, reading, attempting to rock climb, or doing something soccer related.
Born in Oregon, I grew up with the foothills of the Coast Range in my backyard, and the sprawling pastures of the Willamette Valley in the front. Having been raised on a steady diet of farming, art, music, hiking, and ample reading, after graduating high school I found myself working for the Oregon State University Horticulture Department and pursuing a degree in English. My plethora of interests drew me particularly to interdisciplinary issues and during my time in the OSU English department my studies focused on the human experience in their environment, and how this shapes one’s personality and perspectives on the world. When I met environmental ethics in my senior year, my interests grew to include the philosophies that inform the human-nature relationship and how they develop and change over time. After graduating I took an internship with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service running visitor services programs for the Willamette Valley National Wildlife Refuge Complex. While working for the USFWS I became particularly interested in species-based issues involving management practices for threatened and endangered and invasive species. At UO my studies focus on the complex interrelationships between humans and other animals. Specifically I am taking an ecocritical lens to literary and filmic renditions of the human-animal hybrid, and looking at the anxieties produced by biotechnological advancements that blur species boundaries. My interests also include the ways different media forms help or hinder messages of positive interspecies relationships, and how themes of horror and utopia figure within these discourses. On the days when I try not to get too skeptical, you can find me on a hike with my Australian kelpie Žižek, cultivating my weakness for sci-fi/fantasy novels, or enjoying a ridiculously bitter IPA.
Having been born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to explore various cultures from a young age. Due to this curiosity I chose to study anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania, where I took the advice of a favorite professor and spent a semester at the University of Zimbabwe studying the interaction between traditional and modern medicine. This interest—or at least the part that focuses on how social institutions and beliefs articulate with policy—then motivated me to attend Vanderbilt University Law School, where I concentrated on commercial law with a particular interest in banking, finance, and the social factors that influence and regulate them.After a five-year career as a finance and real estate attorney in New York, it became clear both that I would rather be out in the field than confined in an office and that my desire to return to southern Africa would not abate. My wife Brittany and I joined the Peace Corps and served in Zambia. Working with Zambian subsistence farmers and small entrepreneurs in a program that incorporates environmental stewardship, advanced agriculture and food security measures, and sustainable income generation was both humbling and illuminating, and crystallized an interest in conservation into a desire to remain in the field. I then joined Chipembele Wildlife Education Trust, a conservation organization located in Mfuwe, Zambia, near South Luangwa National Park, to design community outreach programs intended to educate and sensitize the community about local environmental issues for the purpose of reducing poaching, habitat destruction, and other environmentally destructive activities.Each of these experiences convinced me of the overarching importance of understanding and aligning science and society when attempting to create sustainable and balanced conservation initiatives. Accordingly, my academic interests focus on the interrelationship between the environment and social and cultural precepts and norms, how these translate into policy, the relative efficacy of policy developed by various means, and how each of the foregoing should be incorporated into environmental and community planning. In my spare time, I enjoy traveling off the beaten path, all things aquatic, exploring the outdoors, growing orchids, and, sadly, following the New York Mets.
I was born a Southern Californian, and a bad one at that. Having been raised among the mountains of East County San Diego, I enjoy rolling hills and valleys over flowing waves and salty breezes. Undergrad took me to Northern California, to the hills of Berkeley and the mountains of North Bay. I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in the Spring of 2012 with degrees in Philosophy and Conservation & Resource Studies. The interim between my academic work has taken me to the mountain tops of the San Bernardino mountains to teach science, ecology, and leadership to 5th and 6th graders and to the San Diego Zoo to be a tour guide in order to share conservation and biodiversity ideas with the public. I am happy and excited to once again be a part of a vibrant academic community in order to continue my academic work. I seek to continue my path down the avenue of Philosophy and Environmental Studies, the two graduate degrees I am pursuing while here. My interests focus on the way the philosophical perspective and approach can help understand environmental philosophy, environmental ethics, and social justice.
I grew up in a small town in coastal Maine. When my parents were my age, they saved up enough money to buy a small sailboat and leave Edinburgh, Scotland for the sea. Eventually, they crossed the Atlantic. The way they tell it, it was hot that summer they arrived in the U.S., so hot they kept sailing north. In Maine, my Dad got a job as a coastal engineer, my Mom, a job as a nurse. I was born, and they’ve never left. Growing up on the coast shaped my outlook of the world; through exploring the rocky isles off of Maine’s coast with my family I developed an interest in the stories we tell at the boundaries, the inter-tidal zones. In college I wandered into the Vermont Folklife Center and was introduced to narrative storytelling through the lens of ethnography – working with communities to tell their own stories on their own terms. My first year out of college, I was fortunate to receive a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to travel to different islands around the world, exploring the many ways storytelling shapes lived experience, stewardship, and wayfinding. Living on islands drove home for me the idea that knowledge cannot be partitioned, that sustainable livelihoods are upheld as much by story as they are by custom and policy. My work has migrated between public folklore, community storytelling and media education, natural disaster recovery work and non-instrumental navigation. At Oregon, I want to cross-examine what community-driven, ethical and socially conscious storytelling initiatives can look like. Working with a team of students and community partners, I will pilot a curriculum that explores possibilities for community engagement on local environmental justice issues, specifically pesticide drift, through multimedia storytelling. By engaging the process of listening to and telling stories in a conscious and collaborative manner, I seek to identify best practices for supporting personal and community change.
As a youngster growing up in a suburb of Chicago, I cultivated an early interest in fishing through summer trips to Wisconsin, West Virginia, and North Carolina, as well as poaching bass ponds on nearby golf courses after hours via bicycle and spinning rod.While attending Middlebury College in Vermont I “evolved” into a fly fisherman and at that point there was no turning back. I have since spent most of my adult life planning my next fly fishing adventure. Ultimately, this led me to full-time residence in Maupin, Oregon- a rural Central Oregon town of 450 people on the lower Deschutes River.In five years as retail and guide service manager, guide, and instructor at the Deschutes Angler Fly Shop in Maupin, I was regularly exposed to a large range of issues surrounding the high profile water resource of the Deschutes River. The river defined the small community in which I lived, and decisions concerning the management of the river had enormous impact on the livelihoods of many in the community, myself included.
Through my almost daily forays to the Deschutes and elsewhere, fly rod in hand, I developed an impassioned concern for the vitality of our rivers. In turn, this led to an inspired interest in the policies managing our region’s water resources with respect to the health of our fisheries.Subsequently, I began working with Trout Unlimited in Bend, OR to further explore the field of watershed management. I have since worked directly on a range of policy issues concerning water resources in Central Oregon as numerous federal, state, and non-profit organizations attempt to balance the demands of recreation, irrigation, and fisheries in our region.Through the Environmental Studies program at UO I will pursue an outstanding academic foundation to complement my experience in the field. Ultimately, I aspire to contribute to water policy and watershed management decisions by innovating solutions to the allocation of water resources in the Western US.My all-time favorite thing to do is to float and camp on rivers, and with some good fishing in the mix I could ask for nothing more. I also enjoy hiking with my two dogs, barbequeing on the back deck, watching Chicago Cubs games, tying steelhead flies, and chasing steelhead throughout the Pacific Northwest.
Raised on the south shore of Kauai, Hawaii and in the heart of the Smoky Mountains in western North Carolina, my life has been a geographic hopscotch that has instilled a love of outdoor exploration and an appreciation for the complexity of current environmental issues. These interests led me to Smith College in Northampton, MA, where I spent summers studying abroad in Kenya and interning with the National Park Service in southern Colorado, receiving my bachelor’s degree in geology in 2007. After graduating, I began a career with the National Park Service, carting my pack and boots to Mount Rainier as a park guide, to the Everglades as an environmental educator, and to the high Sierra of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, where I have worked as a wilderness patrol ranger since 2009. During this time, I spent several winters pursuing an interest in sustainable food production, volunteering on organic farms in the US and abroad. My years of visitor interactions in the National Parks, along with reflection upon my own food- and environmentally-related travel experiences, have led me to think critically about the interface of global experience and community-based action. These questions drew me to the University of Oregon, where I am exploring the connection between food studies abroad and students’ subsequent engagement in local food issues. When not hiking or thinking about food, I can be found running, mandolin picking, gazing excitedly at rocks or stars, and grinding fresh coffee.
Long ago, a young girl put on her best adventuring gear. She had read about travelers, role-played as an elven ranger, and written stories of wilderness heroics. Hair braided and backpack on her back full of a bug-collector’s gear, now was her time to explore the wilds and reclaim the forests from litter and pollution.As a young woman, this journey would take her far beyond New England’s forests. She sought waterfalls hidden in the cliffs with the shamans of Tepoztlán, she sang ancient songs for rain and sun with the pedagogical descendants of Ingwe, she made decoctions of nutritious herbs she’d never before heard of, and she tasted the wild foods of Shenandoah’s sweet hills. In this journey, she joined in all kinds of communities, ecovillages, family farms, farm schools, outdoor education centerspartly as anthropological research, partly soul-searching. During these experiences, she began to have a vision for the kind of community that she wanted to be a part of: a community with nature, mentoring, and rich culture at its core. She also began to hear a clear calling for her to travel to Eugene, Oregon.Leaving her precious (goat) kids with fellow herbalists, she gave everything to travel the Oregon Trail to the great valley of the Willamette. While finding the journey worthwhile in itself, she grows everyday more delighted that Oregon is just as she had imagined. She and her partner have founded their own community, The Gardenhouse, to bring together a three-generation family with a focus on nature-based education and permaculture gardening. While attending the University of Oregon, she will delve again into her anthropological and creative backgrounds to implement a program that will connect (human) kids with nature, culture, and their communities.The projects and goals have matured, but this young woman is still in many ways the same young adventurer, collecting specimens, journaling, writing novels, role-playing, biking, raising animals, playing in the dirt, and enjoying board games with friends. The difference is that now she can make fire by friction, stealth silently through wineberry brambles, make berry baskets from bark, and lead kids on adventures she could only dream about as a young girl.
I graduated from Northwestern University with a B.A. in Environmental Science and a minor in Business Institutions. Growing up in Los Angeles, but having spent the last four years in the Midwest, I am excited to return to the west coast. As a graduate student, I hope to broaden and deepen my understanding of the interplay between natural resource management and economics, as it pertains to decision-making and policy implementation in both the public and private sectors of developed and developing countries. In the long run, my goal is to continue to share the knowledge and experience I gain throughout my career in order to have a positive impact on communities in need, while also working to inspire the next generation of scholars from those communities. I feel social equity in the human experience is integral to remedying environmental, social, and economic plight; so, through my extracurricular activities at Northwestern, I pushed to include a social justice component in my environmentally oriented pursuits. I engaged social justice discourse and became actively involved in the process of serving underprivileged communities through my involvement with social justice organizations.