I currently work on formal and informal programming at Deep Earth Academy to bring scientific ocean drilling science to students, teachers, and the public. I am really looking forward to this expedition with such an impressive group of participants and fabulous instructors and crew! Before coming to this job, I taught middle school and high school science and math, worked at the Museum of Paleontology at UC Berkeley on projects such as Explorations Through Time, the Understanding Evolution website, and Understanding Science website, and developed curriculum and museum materials for different folks. In my free time I work on efforts to bridge the gap between the science community, educators, and the public through the Coalition on the Public Understanding of Science. I love to travel, and because my husband is a marine biologist, have gotten to go to many great places to do science with a diversity of scientists. Other random stuff; one of my life goals is to run in every state in the US, and on every continent; I have two amazing kids; the Muppets absolutely terrify me and are banned from our house; I am not a sci-fi fan at all, but got obsessed with the new Battle Star Galactica series!; I have no idea if I will get sea sick on this expedition!
I have the great good fortune to serve as director for the US IODP’s Deep Earth Academy, a position I’ve held since August of 2004. Sharon, Jen, Jessie, and I work with a small army of volunteer scientists, ship staff, and educators to facilitate activities and develop materials based on the findings of shipboard research expeditions to strengthen learners’ mathematics, science, and analytical skills for a lifetime of learning.
Shortly after arriving at Ocean Leadership (Joint Oceanographic Institutions at the time), I boarded a mostly empty JOIDES Resolution in Panama and sailed with the techs and staff to Newfoundland, and that’s when the School of Rock idea was hatched amidst hair-raising weather and other nonsense. All I can say is that it was a true “lesson in humility!” While the ship was being torn apart and rebuilt in Singapore, we learned that School of Rock was just as effective at the Gulf Coast Repository, where participants could investigate a wider array of cores than we could take to sea.
My path to the JR, Deep Earth Academy, and School of Rock? I served as the Director of Interpretive and Guest Services at Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium, and held positions as the first education director for the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward, Alaska and as education specialist at the Texas State Aquarium in Corpus Christi, after thirteen years in South Texas secondary science classrooms. I’ve had experience with educational television, museum theatre, curriculum development, teacher education, undergraduate courses, and field guiding in Texas, Mexico, Alaska’s Inside Passage, and School of Rock, of course. But when all is said and done, Deep Earth Academy and IODP are the hardest work, most fun, and greatest joy I can imagine.
Kirsten St. John
Thomas E. Gill
Michael J Hunter
Ayorinde Olusegun Idowu
Over 20 years of academic instructional experience in Geology and Geophysics acquired from various Universities and Junior Colleges involving teaching, designing courses, and research activities. Currently a Lecturer in the Department of Natural Sciences, University of Houston Downtown (UHD) teaching full time courses in Earth Science I (Physical Geology GEOL 1307), Oceanography (GEOL 2390) and Introduction to Meteorology (GEOL 1304). Obtained Certification Licenses from the American Meteorological Society (AMS) to teach Meteorology and Oceanography courses at UHD. I am also an Adjunct Faculty Lecturer at Houston Community College (HCC), where I designed and teach Online courses for Distance Education including Astronomy, Environmental Science, Physical Geology, Oceanography, and Meteorology.
I also acquired over 20 years petroleum industry experience (along with academics) while I was Chief Geologist and supervisor of Mobil/Shell/NNPC oil development projects from 1978 to 1999. A professional trainer and author of 18 technical papers to date, I am a Certified Petroleum Geologist by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG); and Fellow Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (FNAPE)
Michael Leach is a Professor of Geography at New Mexico State University Grant Campus. In this capacity, he teaches geography and geology earth science classes. Mr. Leach has a Master of Science degree from the University of Southern California in Systems Management, and a Master of Arts Degree from the University of New Mexico in Geography, with an emphasis on physical geography and Southwest regional geography. As well as catalogued courses in earth science, Mr. Leach has also taught many special topic and special interest courses, including field courses examining local New Mexico geomorphology, as well as a course that covered the physical geography of the Hawaiian Islands, taught on-site on Oahu, Maui, and the big island of Hawaii. Mr. Leach utilizes summers to combine field research to improve his classes with family vacations with his wife and four custodial grandchildren.
Mr. Leach is retired from the U.S. Army, where he achieved the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. His specialties included logistics, maintenance management, and petroleum supply. He served overseas in Germany, as well as various stateside assignments during the cold war.
Mr. Leach will retire from service at NMSU on July 1st, 2012. He plans to continue teaching as an emeritus professor, and will teach selected courses in meteorology, climatology, oceanography, and physical geography.
Lynn D. Millwood
Rusty Myers is Professor of Environmental Science at Alaska Pacific University where he has taught for 32 years. He received his doctorate from Florida Institute of Technology in science education and holds two Master’s degrees in physical oceanography and environmental engineering from the University of Alaska. His primary teaching duties at Alaska Pacific University involve chemistry, oceanography, and meteorology. Rusty has garnered a number of awards during his teaching career including APU Merit Award for Teaching (1987, 2000), APU President’s Forum Award for Outstanding Teaching (1992, 2008), APU Merit Award for Outstanding Online Instruction (2006), Exemplary Teaching Award, General Board of Higher Education United Methodist Church (1994), and Alaska Professor of the Year (1994).
His professional interests are varied, but have focused on urban environmental issues, science education, and science and the humanities. During the 80s and early 90s, his research focused on air quality. After completing several studies on wood burning impacts on ambient air quality using receptor modeling, he turned his attention to indoor air pollution completing several studies on formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide, and sick building syndrome. During the last decade Rusty’s research interest has been on water quality issues. During this time he has worked with citizen monitoring groups on the water quality of Anchorage streams. He currently monitors salmon returns to evaluate the Chester Creek rehabilitation project. In addition to teaching and research he has three published reference books: two in chemistry and one in physics. The most recent The 100 Most Important Chemical Compounds: A Reference Guide (Greenwood Press 2007).
Outside of work Rusty likes to spend time with his wife Chris enjoying the Alaskan outdoors, working together on church projects, and running.
William Porter received the doctorate in 1986 from the University of Maryland at College Park. His research specialties include urban geography, urban planning, and geographical information systems. Areas of teaching experience include physical geography, earth science and weather and climate. Dr. Porter, Professor in the Department of History and Political Science, has received funding from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund to train high school students in school districts of northeastern North Carolina in the area of earth science to increase their interest and competency in the subject. Dr. Porter has also received funding from the Department of Education’s Minority Science and Engineering Improvement program, in collaboration with the University of New Hampshire, Penn State University, and Dillard University, to train pre-service teachers in the Department of Teacher Education at ECSU and in-service teachers from middle and high schools in northeastern North Carolina methods of learning earth science using problem-based learning strategies, geospatial technologies, and field experiences. The program is funded for over one million dollars and has a duration of three years from 2007 through 2009. The name of the program is Transforming Earth Systems Science Education (TESSE) and is funded by the National Science Foundation. Dr. Porter has been involved with several other funded projects, including Critical Thinking Through Technology in which he is Co-Director. In this project, ECSU is in charge of helping minority serving institutions from across the nation to infuse critical thinking strategies in entry-level science courses. The project involves eleven institutions and workshops have been conducted at ECSU and at North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina for the purpose of helping science faculty selected to the program to infuse critical thinking strategies into their science classes.
Douglas Allan Segar
I am currently teaching both Climate Change and Ocean Sciences online at Laney College in Oakland. I am an oceanographer by training and have been teaching ocean sciences on and off for over four decades. Despite the popular perception that climate change is a new issue, it has been a central part of my curriculum throughout those decades. Indeed, one of my first research projects as a student involved collection and analysis of 15m long cores in the North Atlantic and Mediterranean. During my career I have worked in the U.S. House of Representatives, owned my owned company, and worked in various government agencies, research institutes, and universities and was Director of several. However, I have always believed education is the key to the future and I returned to full time teaching several years ago, which also gave me more freedom to pursue my other avocation underwater photography and videography. My web site reefimages.com features thousands of underwater images and videos taken by my wife, who is a marine biologist and myself. The Reefimages web site is now used regularly as an open source educational resource in schools, colleges and by individuals in more than 150 countries worldwide. The web site is used by about 20,000 individual visitors a month.