Lophocampa caryae (Hickory Tussock Moth) with attached pollinia on Asclepias syriaca (Common Milkweed)

Throughout my entire academic career, I have always made sure that teaching was a priority. Whether student teaching, tutoring, creating kid-friendly nature classes, or mentoring undergraduates, I have always felt comfortable in front of a crowd that is interested in learning.

My philosophy is that teaching should be active. Therefore, I engage students in their education by incorporating modern technology into the classroom (e.g., asking them to update biological Wikipedia pages, using clicker remotes), utilizing group activities, and helping them understand how biology and the natural environment interacts with their everyday life (e.g., what is the real carbon footprint of your hybrid car?).

IMAG0032Ecology students witnessing succession at Illinois Beach State Park.

Classes Taught at the College Level:

  • General Ecology (Sample Syllabus Here, Example Student-centered Assignment Here)
  • Introductory Biology (Sample Syllabus Here, Example Student-centered Assignment Here)
  • Environmental Science / The Changing Natural Environment (Non-majors, Sample Syllabus Here, Example Class Activity Here)
  • Introduction to Biology (Non-majors)
  • Climate Change Ecology (Co-taught)
  • Plant-animal Interactions (Co-taught)
  • Forest Ecology (Co-taught)

Select Course Evaluations:

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Teaching Experience:

Instructor, Northeastern Illinois University, August 2012 – Present
Wrote the curriculum and am currently instructing a general education environmental science class and General Ecology. Responsibilities include lecturing, leading group discussions, preparing formal and informal assessment, and grading written assignments and exams.

Adjunct Professor, Aurora University, January 2012 – May 2012
Developed curriculum and am currently teaching a first semester introductory biology class. Responsibilities include lecturing, leading group discussions, preparing formal and informal assessment including quizzes and exams, grading written assignments and exams, and running laboratory experiments.

Population Genetics Seminar, Georgetown University, 2010
Helped design and instruct a population genetics seminar for the Armed Forces DNA
Identification Laboratory (AFDIL). I wrote and presented computer based learning tools to illustrate important biological concepts through interactive and independent learning strategies.

Biology Teaching Fellow, Georgetown University, 2006–2008
Developed and implemented instructional lessons in Introductory Biology, Forest Ecology, Plant-animal Interactions, and Global Climate Change Ecology classes involving active learning and assessment. Designed and taught classes, supervised the laboratory activities, and graded laboratory reports, homework and exams.

Biology Student Teaching, Grove City College, 2005
Independently developed and implemented biological curriculum for high school students from grade 10 through 12. Instructional techniques successfully practiced include: lecture, laboratory activities, recitation, formal and informal assessment, cooperative group work and practical experience.

Biology Tutoring, Grove City College, 2005
Developed biological curriculum for two high school students. Implemented interactive biological instructional activities and informal assessment on a weekly basis.