Earth Expeditions

Laura Avila

Laura Avila

… is an agroecologist, passionate about tropical conservation. She completed a Ph.D. and an M.Sc. in Interdisciplinary Ecology, and she received a Certificate in Tropical Conservation & Development at the University of Florida. She is

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Simon Bird

Simon Bird

Instructor

Simon Bird is an ecologist and conservation biologist focusing on environmental education and urban conservation. His research and teaching interests center around enhancing community-based conservation through education, land use ecology, urban ecology, invertebrate biodiversity…

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Shasta Bray

Shasta Bray

… grew up catching fireflies, reading Ranger Rick and falling in love with the animals at the zoo. Dedicated to wildlife conservation, she believes that personal encounters with nature and wildlife create emotional connections that

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Debbie Clemens

Debbie Clemens

… is a conservation biologist from the Chicago-land area. She joined the Project Dragonfly family in 2011 as an Advanced Inquiry Program (AIP) student, earning a master’s degree in zoology with a focus on wild

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Katie Corr

Katie Corr

…is all about Project Dragonfly. Aside from completing her own M.A. in Zoology through the GFP, she also coordinates and leads Cleveland Metroparks Zoo’s branch of Dragonfly’s Advanced Inquiry Program (AIP). She loves helping students

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Leah Crowe

Leah Crowe

… is a high school Spanish teacher who is enamored of nature and wildlife. She likes nothing better than to wander her property in southeastern Indiana with her husband and two dogs. A life-long learner,

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Hays Cummins

Hays Cummins

… is a professor in the Western Program and Geography at Miami University. Hays is a founding Co-Director of Project Dragonfly and served as the science editor for Dragonfly magazine. Hays received his Ph.D. in

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Liz Dame

Liz Dame

… received her bachelor’s in marine science from the University of South Carolina. She earned her M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati, where her research focused on behavioral ecology and marine ecology, respectively.

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Katie Dell

Katie Dell

… is a middle school science teacher and science department chair outside of Baltimore, Maryland. This is her sixth year in the classroom and her second year as a Community Learning Leader with Project Dragonfly.

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Ryan Draper

Ryan Draper

… grew up in Houston, spending lots of time in the surrounding areas like the beach and state parks. Ryan currently works at the Houston Zoo as the Public Relations Manager. The title sounds fancy,

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Maureen Drinkard

Maureen Drinkard

… is better known her students as Dr. Mo, an assistant professor of environmental science and ecology at Brevard College near Asheville, North Carolina. She fell in love with wetland ecology through a senior research

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Katie Feilen

Katie Feilen

Visiting Assistant Professor

Katie Feilen is a primatologist and conservation biologist, who has chased 12 monkey species through the jungles on three continents. As part of Disney’s Conservation Team, she coordinated conservation efforts of the…

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Samantha Gorenstein

Samantha Gorenstein

… teaches fifth grade science in Littleton, Colorado. Her passion for conservation work began during a volunteer placement at a wildlife orphanage in Nelspruit, South Africa. After returning to Colorado, she began volunteering as a

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Savannah Gupton

Savannah Gupton

… holds a Bachelor of Science in Zoology and earned her master’s in biology from Miami University through Project Dragonfly in 2017. In addition to the ecological and conservation work done while a student at

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Matt Hallett

Matt Hallett

… is the Manager of the Guyana Conservation Initiative at the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens and a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Wildlife Ecology & Conservation at the University of Florida. His research

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Elizabeth Katoa

Elizabeth Katoa

… is a high school biology teacher for the North Ridgeville City Schools near Cleveland, Ohio. She completed her MA in Zoology from Miami University through the Global Field Program and traveled to Belize, the

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Kathayoon Khalil

Kathayoon Khalil

… is the Principal Evaluator at the Seattle Aquarium. She received her Ph.D. in 2014 from Stanford University in learning sciences and technology design and her master’s in environmental science from Yale University’s School of

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Shafkat Khan

Shafkat Khan

Visiting Assistant Professor

Shafkat Khan received his Ph.D. from the University of Georgia’s Odum School of Ecology in August 2016. Shafkat completed his B.A. in environmental studies at Goshen College in Indiana. Shafkat’s ecological interest…

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Jill Korach

Jill Korach

Assistant Director of Field Programs

Jill Korach earned an undergraduate degree in biology from Washington University in St. Louis where she focused on tropical rainforest ecology, a master’s from Miami University’s Institute of Environmental Sciences…

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Alicia Lamfers

Alicia Lamfers

Instructor

Alicia Lamfers received her MAT from Miami University and her undergraduate degree in biology from Metropolitan State University in Denver. She worked as a paramedic for 6 years in Denver’s inner city neighborhoods until…

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Genifer Lara

Genifer Lara

Instructor

Genifer Lara currently teaches geology and geography at Mohave Community College in Kingman, Arizona. For the past several years, she has been a field instructor for Round River Conservation Studies, a study abroad program…

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Dan Marsh

Dan Marsh

… is the Director of Education at the Cincinnati Zoo, where he manages the departments’ educational programs for the general public and schools. Dan received his B. A. in Biology from the University of Louisville

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Kevin Matteson

Kevin Matteson

Associate Director, Master’s Programs

Kevin Matteson serves as an instructor, administrator, and academic adviser for Project Dragonfly. His research looks at the diversity of bees, butterflies, and other pollinators in community gardens and other green…

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Lily Maynard

Lily Maynard

… is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Florida in the School of Natural Resources and Environment, where she is completing a dissertation studying the conservation impacts of zoos and aquariums across North America.

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Judith Metcalf

Judith Metcalf

… received her doctorate from the University of Louisville and her master’s degree from Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Her research interests include human impacts on populations and communities. Her master’s work explored the impact of

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Jennifer Mickelberg

Jennifer Mickelberg

… holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and a Ph.D. in Environmental Science form George Mason University. Her doctoral dissertation, “Understanding and Managing Isolation in a Fragmented Population of Golden

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Jim Miller

Jim Miller

… is an AP Environmental Science & Environmental Science teacher at Cleveland Heights High School, near Cleveland, Ohio. Jim received his bachelor’s degree in environmental studies through Allegheny College and his teaching certificate through Ashland

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Sarah Navarro

Sarah Navarro

… grew up in Michigan where her parents fostered her love of nature with frequent camping trips and encouragement to explore the wildlife all around her (as long as she didn’t bring it inside!). Sarah

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Kate Nordyke

Kate Nordyke

… currently serves as co-director at Evergreen Holistic Learning Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, a non-profit organization that she and her family established in 2009 with the mission of offering unique, hands-on learning opportunities that promote

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Jerran Orwig

Jerran Orwig

… is the Advanced Inquiry Program Manager in the Education Department at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden in Cincinnati, Ohio. She oversees the graduate program at the Zoo and supports AIP students as they

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