MS, Ecology, University of South Florida
BS, Ecology, Unity College
AS, Radiologic Science, Gateway Technical College
While working as a radiographer and mammographer, I knew that I would rather be doing something else. After a trip with a bird biologist friend in Costa Rica I finally mustered up the courage to leave the allied health field and began studying ecology at Unity College. At Unity, I worked for two years alongside Amy Arnett studying an invasive plant, Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife) and the effectiveness of biological control insects released to combat it. I then continued my studies in plant-insect interactions in Florida, this time studying an invasive insect, Cactoblastis cactorum, assessing the damage to the cacti that it feeds on.
I enjoy teaching introductory biology and sharing my knowledge and enthusiasm with my students. Teaching freshman-level courses not only provide me the opportunity to teach the subject of biology but also to guide people in how to become successful students. The seminar courses that I have developed combine my personal and professional interests (biology and agriculture) and have given me an avenue to teach students of all levels.
Personally, I have also been working as an organic vegetable farmer for five years. Farming is what led me back to this region, lured by an abundance of healthy, delicious, local food produced by people I know. I also have aspirations to open a creamery and become a certified yoga instructor in my spare time.