One of the primary reasons Penn State is recognized around the globe as a distinguished university is the sterling caliber of its faculty. As a World Campus student, you will enjoy the opportunity to learn from the same instructors who teach traditional face-to-face classes on Penn State's twenty-four campuses across Pennsylvania.
The Master of Education in Earth Sciences program is designed and taught by some of the finest instructors in the United States.
Eliza Richardson, Ph.D.
Eliza is an associate professor in Penn State's Department of Geosciences. She also holds a joint appointment at the Dutton e-Education Institute and is the lead faculty member for the master's degree in earth science education. Eliza received her doctorate in 2002 from MIT on earthquake source physics. Her research interests include fault mechanics, earthquake triggering, and the frictional properties of granular media. As the lead faculty member for the Master of Education in Earth Sciences, Eliza is developing new courses that cover current controversies in the Earth sciences as well as plate tectonics and hazards.
Michael A. Arthur, Ph.D.
Michael is a professor in Penn State's Department of Geosciences and is affiliated with the Penn State Astrobiology Research Center and the Earth and Environmental Science Institute. He has been at Penn State since late 1990 and served as department head in geosciences from 1991 through 1997. He received his doctorate in geology from Princeton University in 1979. His research revolves around the chemistry and circulation of modern and ancient oceans and implications for past global change as revealed by the geochemistry of marine sediments with insights from numerical models. Michael has collaborated with Chris Marone in designing and teaching oceanography courses at Penn State, and together they are offering a general oceanography course for the master of education program.
David Babb, Ph.D.
David received his bachelor of science in meteorology from the University of Kansas; during that time he worked summers at the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Oklahoma. In 1996 he received his doctorate from Penn State, studying cloud-drop sizes with the use of millimeter-wave radar. Although he has experience in both academia and private industry, David prefers the challenges and rewards of teaching. Currently he teaches both meteorology and calculus, and specializes in instructional media design and assessment. In 2003 David received the Mitchell Award for Innovative Teaching in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences. Growing up in a family of avid sailors, he has always felt that the weather was more than just a conversation starter, and he enjoys sharing this passion with his students.
Vera Cole, Ph.D.
Dr. Vera Cole serves as the program officer for the energy and sustainability policy (ESP) degree program. As a senior lecturer for the ESP program, she also develops and teaches courses related to energy sources, implications, and policy. While earning her BS in mechanical engineering from New York Institute of Technology, Dr. Cole attended school and worked full time — in a character-building process that took eight years. This experience serves her well in the design and delivery of courses through the Dutton Institute, where many students work hard to advance academically while managing demanding jobs and lives. Offered a fellowship from Motorola, Dr. Cole earned her MS in industrial engineering from Arizona State University where she had her first experiences with computer simulation, systems thinking, and process management. This interest carried through in her doctoral work at Drexel University, funded by a National Science Foundation grant. There she studied information science and technology, and researched the design of data-efficient heuristics for applying production management principles to information-based business processes, using systems dynamics simulation models.
Chris Marone, Ph.D.
Chris is a professor in Penn State's Department of Geosciences. He obtained his doctorate in geophysics from Columbia University and was on the faculty at U.C. Berkeley and MIT before coming to Penn State. Marone's work is on friction, earthquakes, and fault mechanics. He is involved in studies of earthquake nucleation and postseismic fault motion, friction constitutive laws, granular mechanics, and physicochemical effects on deformation of Earth materials. He has conducted large numbers of laboratory studies of physical properties of Earth materials and has designed and constructed high-pressure testing machines to carry out complex experiments. Marone's laboratory is one of only a few in the world that can carry out friction experiments under geophysical conditions and complex loading histories, including true triaxial loading and dynamic stressing.
Christopher Palma, Ph.D.
Chris is Associate Director of Outreach for the Eberly College of Science at Penn State and teaches in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics. He received his doctorate in 2001 from the University of Virginia while studying the interaction between the Milky Way Galaxy and its satellite galaxies. Chris is an observational astronomer and has observed with many of the world's premier telescopes, including the Hubble Space Telescope, the Keck Telescope, and Penn State's Hobby-Eberly Telescope. His primary interest is in astronomy education and outreach programs, and Chris has been coordinating and teaching astronomy courses and workshops for in-service and preservice educators since 2002.
Tim White, Ph.D.
Tim is a sedimentary geologist and senior research associate in Penn State's Earth and Environmental Systems Institute. He is also the dive safety officer for Penn State's science diving program. Tim worked in the hydrogeologic consulting field until 1994 when he returned to Penn State and received his doctorate in 1997. He then became an NSF-funded, postdoctoral scholar at the University of Iowa, and worked for the U.S. Geological Survey in Anchorage before returning to Penn State in 2003. His research interests include sedimentary geochemical and stratigraphic approaches to paleoclimatology, particularly focused on ancient soils.