I am a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society at Oregon State University (OSU) and my teaching and research are in the areas of experiential education, place-based inquiry, art-humanities-environmental science collaborations, and environmental ethics. I conduct research on how human/nature relationships in conservation and sustainability contexts shift due to experiential and interdisciplinary interventions and how learners come to care about place.
My research on field philosophy explores the connection between physical and ethical relationships with the natural world. It uses the tools of social science and the humanities and the wisdom of place-based ecology to investigate human/nature relationships, connections to place, and environmental citizenship. For my doctoral project I developed a wilderness ethics course in Isle Royale National Park (ISRO), an island in northwest Lake Superior, to study if and how wilderness experience, coupled with a care-based and community-focused curriculum, could help students develop empathy for nonhuman nature. My current projects include an arts, humanities, and environmental science interpretive learning trail and field trip support framework for high school teachers at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest (HJA). This trail and associated activities weaves HJA conservation science with both creative work from a long-running writer’s residency and reflective activities to teach standards-based science and encourage personal relationships with place.
I am interested in collaborative relationships to study informal science learning, interdisciplinary environmental education, and affective learning outcomes.