Katherine McCarville is Associate Professor of Geosciences in the Division of Science and Mathematics at Upper Iowa University. As a lone-wolf, her teaching load is varied, from introductory geology, dinosaurs, and natural disasters in the lower division, to GIS/remote sensing, climate change, geomorphology, and hydrogeology in the upper division. She was a CUR Geoscience Councilor from 2009 to 2012.
“At Upper Iowa, we have many students who expect to enter careers in natural resource management after completing their undergraduate degrees. Many of our students are on their way to becoming first generation college graduates, and many come from at-risk backgrounds. Undergraduate research experiences — from activities embedded in coursework to capstone senior projects or theses — help students develop skills and demonstrate initiative that makes them stand above the crowd in a competitive field. As a broadly trained geoscientist with background in minerals and mining geology, and current research interests in avian paleontology, I most enjoy advising on individual projects that validate students’ own curiosity and interests. I’ve advised projects involving trumpeter swans, mourning doves, and kestrels, GIS mapping of glacial erratics and urban forests, modeling stormwater runoff, and using soil testing to catch poachers baiting deer! There’s nothing like watching students as they develop confidence and skills over the course of their own research activity.”