Faculty & Staff

Regular Faculty

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Julia S. Carlson

Associate Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability



Headshot of Teri A. Jacobs

Teri A. Jacobs

Asst Professor/ Adj Ann/ Director of EVST Undergraduate Studies/ A&S Geography & Environmental Studies, School of Environment and Sustainability

401G Braunstein Hall

(513) 556-9707

Conservation biogeography; physical geography; ecology; environmental science; remote sensing and geographic information sciences
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Stephen F. Matter

Associate Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

731I Rieveschl Hall


School for the Environment and Susatinability
Department of Biological Sciences, ECBR, SBBE
Ecology; Population Ecology; Metapopulation Dynamics; Dispersal Behavior; Community Patterns and Dynamics; Insect Plant Interactions; Modelling
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Daniel Murphy

Associate Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

4th Braunstein Hall


Dr. Murphy is a cultural anthropologist whose research explores the interwoven relationships between humans and their environments, focusing, in particular, on the cultural, political, and economic dimensions of human response to environmental change.  Both in his research and as an educator, Dr. Murphy is deeply committed to the application of anthropological perspectives in the development of theoretically sound yet practical solutions to a range of human problems including rural poverty, environmental degradation, and adaptation to climate change. His current research is embedded in two, long-term programmatic interests: 1) ethnographic research on disaster and rural social change among mobile pastoralists in Mongolia and 2) applied research on climate change adaptation in the United States.
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Kenneth Petren

Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

800C Rieveschl Hall


Evolutionary ecology: Landscape genomics, migration, speciaiton, adaptation, invasive species, behavior, island systems, "ancient" DNA, vertebrates, Darwin's finches and lizards.
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Robert A Skipper

History and Philosophy of Biology, Philosophy of Science, School of Environment and Sustainability



Robert Skipper is Professor of Philosophy and Fellow of the Graduate School in the Department of Philosophy and School of Environment and Sustainability (SEAS). He received the PhD from the Committee on the History and Philosophy of Science in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Maryland, College Park. Prior to that, he received the BA and MA from the Department of Philosophy at Texas Tech University.

Skipper's main research focuses on the origins and development of evolutionary genetics. In particular, he works on problems about the structure of biological controversies, theory change, theory/model assessment, theory/model structure/interpretation, evolutionary dynamics, biological explanation, and epistemology of biological experiments.

In addition, Skipper has interests in environmental philosophy, philosophy of food, and obesity science.
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David S Stradling

Zane L. Miller Professor of Urban History; Interim Director of the School of Environment and Sustainability, School of Environment and Sustainability



David Stradling is the Zane L. Miller Professor of Urban History and the Interim Director of the School of Environment and Sustainability. In his twenty-plus years at the University of Cincinnati, he has taught a variety of courses on urban and environmental history. 

David is the author of several books, including The Nature of New York: An Environmental History of the Empire State (Cornell University Press, 2010), Making Mountains: New York City and the Catskills (University of Washington Press, 2007), Smokestacks and Progressives: Environmentalists, Engineers and Air Quality in America, 1881-1951 (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999), and, with Richard Stradling, Where the River Burned: Carl Stokes and the Struggle to Save Cleveland (Cornell University Press, 2015).  He is currently writing a global history of dredging.

David earned his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1996, after having earned a BA and MAT from Colgate University.  Living in Clifton, he raised two daughters with his partner Jodie, and he commutes to campus on foot through Burnet Woods.
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Sarah Janette Sturmer

Instructor - Adjunct Ann, School of Environment and Sustainability

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Amy Townsend-Small

Professor of Environmental Science, School of Environment and Sustainability

605 Geology-Physics Building


Service-driven researcher, teacher, and mentor in environmental science and policy. Together with my collaborators and students, I’ve published over 40 articles and raised over $2 million in research funding. My current research focuses on atmospheric methane emissions from the oil and gas supply chain and climate change feedbacks. I also work on community engaged research toward environmental justice and greenhouse gas emissions reductions together with my students.

Affiliate Faculty

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Susan E Allen

Associate Professor, Department Head, NAGPRA Director, School of Environment and Sustainability

458 Braunstein Hall


Affiliate Faculty, Department of Classics
Affiliate Faculty, Environmental Studies
Affiliate Faculty, European Studies

Dr. Allen's current research collaborations investigate the role of agriculture and climate change in the emergence of social inequality in the Aegean (Greece) and Balkans (Albania, Croatia), the transition to agriculture in southern Europe, and the historical and political ecology of Mediterranean wetlands. As part of her research projects on these themes, she also works with archaeobotanical materials to interrogate formation processes that affect assemblage composition and interpretive potential. 

As Co-Director (with Ilir Gjipali, Institute of Archaeology, Tirana) of the Southern Albania Neolithic Archaeological Project (SANAP), she is working toward publication of an edited monograph on their results from surface survey, coring, and excavation at the Early Neolithic site of Vashtëmi and survey and / or coring at several other Early Neolithic sites in the region.

In cooperation with China Shelton (ACOR), she conducts archeobotanical recovery and analysis for the Iklaina Archaeological Project, directed by Michael Cosmopoulos (UMSL), focused on excavation of the Mycenaean site of Iklaina in southwestern Greece. 

In the lab, she has been collaborating with graduate student Martha Wendel (MA 2019) to complete analysis and publication of seed and charcoal remains from two sites in northern Albania excavated as part of the Projekti Arkeologjik i Shkodrës (PASH), directed by Michael Galaty (U. Michigan). 

She was recently awarded funding from the University Research Council to facilitate her collaboration with the Cetina Valley Survey (CeVaS), directed by Helena Tomas (U. Zagreb). Her sub-project within CeVaS focuses on documentation of human-environment landscape dynamics in the valley. 

Dr. Allen encourages potential graduate students, particularly those with interest in palaeoethnobotany, archaeobotany, ethnobotany, or environmental archaeology, to reach out to her directly.
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Richard Allan Beck

Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

207 Braunstein Hall


Geographical information networks, GIS, Remote Sensing, Climate Change, South Asia, Water Resources.
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Michael T Booth

Research Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

820D Rieveschl Hall


Aquatic ecology, fish biology, migration and dispersal, streams, limnology, invasive species
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Jeffrey L Brewer

Asst Professor - Educator, School of Environment and Sustainability

400A Braunstein Hall


I am an Assistant Professor- Educator in the Department of Geography & GIS (College of A&S). My primary research interest is adopting an interdisciplinary approach to understanding human-environment relations and the evolution of urban landscapes, particularly as they relate to resource conservation and sustainability. My current fieldwork focuses on the study of household and community scale, sustainable water management activities in subtropical regions. I am also interested in the cultural geographies of food and sport, particularly the geospatial dynamics of craft breweries and urban cycling networks.
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Xi Chen

Assoc Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

Braunstein Hall


Hydrology, water resources, environmental studies and modeling, physical geography, environmental engineering
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Brooke E Crowley

Professor, Geology Graduate Director, Stable Isotope Ecology, Quaternary Paleoecology, School of Environment and Sustainability

503 Geology-Physics Building


I use stable isotope biogeochemistry to answer a variety of questions about modern and extinct vertebrate communities. My main research interests include extinction, environmental and ecological consequences of human impacts, habitat transformation and conservation. Please visit my personal website for more information (http://www.agoraphotia.com). 
Headshot of Diego  F. Cuadros

Diego F. Cuadros

Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

401C Braunstein Hall


Medical and health geography, GIS applications in epidemiology, environmental studies, mathematical modeling of infectious diseases, host-pathogen and pathogen-pathogen interactions, health economics assessment
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Steve Paul Depoe

Professor - Adj Ann, School of Environment and Sustainability



Stephen P. Depoe, PhD (Northwestern, 1986), is a Professor of Communication. He is currently the co-editor of a book series on Media and Environmental Communication published by Palgrave MacMillan.  He was the founding editor of ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION: A JOURNAL OF NATURE AND CULTURE (www.tandfonline.com/renc) from 2007-13, and was also the founding chair of the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA) (http://theieca.org). His research areas include environmental and risk communication, particularly the role of the public in environmental decision-making; and public communication. His recent work includes the co-edited volumes VOICE AND ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION (Palgrave MacMillan, 2014);  NUCLEAR LEGACIES: COMMUNICATION, CONTROVERSY, AND THE U. S. NUCLEAR WEAPONS COMPLEX (Lexington Press, 2007) and COMMUNICATION AND PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IN ENVIRONMENTAL DECISION MAKING (SUNY Press, 2004). Dr. Depoe teaches courses in Environmental Communication, Communication and Sport, Rhetoric of Social Movements, Rhetorical Research Methods, and Advanced Rhetorical Theory.
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Aaron Diefendorf

Professor, Organic and Isotope Geochemistry, School of Environment and Sustainability

610 Geology-Physics Building


My research uses stable isotope and organic biogeochemical tools to solve critical questions in the areas of global climate change, carbon cycling, Earth’s climate sensitivity, paleoclimatology, and paleoecology.
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Laura D. Dudley Jenkins

Professor of Political Science, Faculty Affiliate WGSS and Asian Studies , School of Environment and Sustainability



Laura Dudley Jenkins' research focuses on social justice policies in the context of culturally diverse democracies, including India, Indonesia, South Africa, and the United States.

Her book Religious Freedom and Mass Conversion in India (Penn Press 2019) won the Hubert Morken Best Book Prize from the Religion and Politics Section of the American Political Science Association (APSA). A study of mass conversions to Christianity, Buddhism, and Judaism and ongoing efforts to prevent conversions, Jenkins reveals how "religious freedom" arguments and laws have actually undermined the religious freedom of women, lower castes, and religious minorities. 

Jenkins' book Identity and Identification in India: Defining the Disadvantaged (Routledge, 2003, 2009) examines competing demands for affirmative action on the basis of caste, religion, class, and gender and the ways the government identifies recipients through the courts, census, and official certificates. Her research as a Fulbright New Century Scholar in South Africa and India resulted in Affirmative Action Matters: Creating Opportunities for Students Around the World, co-edited with Michele S. Moses (Routledge 2014).

In her articles, she analyzes religious freedom and conversion, competing minorities’ claims for affirmative action, colonial and contemporary government anthropology, the role of social science in anti-discrimination law, reserved legislative seats for women, and the role of culture and the arts in sustainable development.

Jenkins' book chapters examine anti-Muslim political communication in the US and India, religious family laws, mass religious conversion as protest, comparative affirmative action, minority rights, historically Dalit colleges, anxious secularism, women and development, regulation of religion, and methodological diversity in political science. 

In addition to two Fulbrights, Dr. Jenkins has received fellowships from the Dartmouth Humanities Center and the United States Institute of Peace.

Religious Freedom and Mass Conversion in India. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019. 
Hubert Morken Best Book Award 
APSA Religion and Politics Section 

Affirmative action matters: Creating opportunities for students around the world. (with Michele S. Moses). New York: Routledge, 2014.

Identity and Identification in India: Defining the Disadvantaged. London and New York: RoutledgeCurzon 2003, reissued in paperback by Routledge 2009.

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Nicholas P Dunning

Professor , School of Environment and Sustainability

Environmental archaeology, soils, physical geography, cultural ecology, Latin America
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Muhammad U. Faruque

Inayat & Ishrat Malik Assistant Professor and Taft Center Fellow (AY 23-24), School of Environment and Sustainability

728C Old Chemistry Building


Muhammad U. Faruque is the Inayat Malik Assistant Professor and a Taft Center Fellow at the University of Cincinnati. He also holds a Visiting Scholar position at Harvard University. He earned his PhD (with distinction) from the University of California, Berkeley, and served as Exchange Scholar at Harvard University and as George Ames Postdoctoral Fellow at Fordham University. His highly acclaimed book Sculpting the Self (University of Michigan Press, 2021) addresses “what it means to be human” in a secular, post-Enlightenment world by exploring notions of selfhood and subjectivity in Islamic and non-Islamic philosophical literatures, including modern philosophy and neuroscience. He is the author of three books and over forty-five academic articles, which have appeared (or are forthcoming) in numerous prestigious, peer-reviewed journals such as Philosophy East and West, Arabic Sciences and Philosophy (Cambridge), Sophia, Brill Journal of Sufi Studies, Religious Studies (Cambridge), Brill Journal of Islamic Ethics, and Ancient Philosophy. He has delivered lectures in many North American, European, Asian, and Middle Eastern universities. He gives public lectures on a wide of range of topics such as climate change, spirituality, meditation, A.I., Islamic psychology, and Islam and the West. He is also a recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including the prestigious Templeton Foundation Global Philosophy of Religion grant and the Title IV Grant, U.S. Dept. of Education.

      While his past research has explored modern and premodern conceptions of selfhood and identity and their bearing on ethics, religion, and culture, his current project investigates whether or not Sufi philosophy and practice—as articulated in the School of Ibn ʿArabī—support and foster an active engagement toward the planet's well-being and an ecologically viable way of life and vision. He is also at work on a book on A.I. and the ethical challenges of information technology. He edited volumes include From the Divine to the Human: Contemporary Islamic Thinkers on Evil, Suffering, and the Global Pandemic (Routledge, 2023) and A Cultural History of South Asian Literature, Volume 3: The Early Modern Age (1400-1700) (co-edited with S. Nair).

      His interests and expertise encompass history and theory of subjectivity, environmental humanities, religion and climate change, cross-cultural philosophy, gender hermeneutics, Sufism, Perso-Arabic mystical literature, Islamic philosophy and ethics, history and philosophy of science, Islamic Psychology, and Graeco-Arabica. He teaches courses on Islam and social justice issues, climate change, mysticism, philosophy, as well as on selfhood and identity.
      In his personal life, he loves gardening (plant life fascinates him), spending time in nature, travelling, cooking, photography, and watching movies. He also has a passion for classical Indian (raag) and Persian music, and for art, music, and poetry in general.

      He is also affiliated with the departments of Philosophy, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Environmental Studies, and the program in Religious Certificate.
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Bob Newton Hyland

Associate Professor Educator, School of Environment and Sustainability



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Kristen Iversen

Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability



Kristen Iversen holds a Ph.D in English and Creative Writing from the University of Denver (1996). She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in literary nonfiction and fiction, and also serves as Literary Nonfiction Editor of The Cincinnati Review and faculty editor of the undergraduate journal Short Vine. Her work includes the books Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats (2012, paperback/audio 2013; selected by universities around the country for their First Year Experience/Common Read programs); Molly Brown: Unraveling the Myth (1999, third edition 2018)Shadow Boxing: Art and Craft in Creative Nonfiction (2004); and two edited anthologies, Doom with a View (2020) and Don’t Look Now: Things We Wish We Hadn't Seen (2020). Essays and stories have appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, The American Scholar, Fourth Genre, Beloit Fiction Journal, and others. Several documentaries have been based on her work, including a new documentary Full Body Burden (forthcoming 2023) and an option for a tv series. In 2020-2021, she was chosen as a Fulbright Scholar for the University of Bergen, Norway (temporarily postponed due to Covid). Forthcoming books are Friend and Faithful Stranger: Nikola Tesla in the Gilded Age and Wide and Generous World: New and Published Essays. See www.kristeniversen.com
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Latonya Jackson

Research Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

422 QA Rieveschl Hall


Aquatic toxicology, ecotoxicology, endocrine disrupting chemicals, chemical mixtures in the aquatic environment, anthropogenic contamination, chronic and acute effects of environmental contaminants on fish, fish biology, live-bearing fish, combined effects of global warming and other stressors on aquatic organisms
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Lucinda P Lawson

School of Environment and Sustainability

My research focuses on the relationship between species and their environment. Species do not exist nor evolve in a vacuum. Thus both the climate and geological landscape in which they exist as well as the other species which they encounter have shaped their past and their present, and will shape their future in our rapidly changing world. I model these dynamics both to study the past (evolutionary processes) and to predict the future (conservation biology). I primarily work on tropical, terrestrial, vertebrates including African amphibians and Galapagos finches. Majors areas of reseach are: landscape genetics/genomics, conservation genetics and evaluations of extinction potential, functional genomics, evolutionary processes, speciation dynamics, hybrid admixure and contact zones.

I teach in the introductory Environmental Science course series (EVST 1012) where we tackle the environmental challenges of our times.
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Lin Liu

Professor, Graduate Director, Co-Director of GIS Center, School of Environment and Sustainability

400E Braunstein Hall


GIS, geographic visualization, quantitative methods, location analysis, crime mapping and analysis, geo-simulation, China
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Eduardo Joseph Martinez

Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability



My research is in democratic theory and focuses on standards for evaluating institutions and practices within democracies, such as administrative agencies, civic education, representation, and political partisanship. For more on my research, please see my website: eduardojmartinez.com
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Eric Franklin Maurer

Assistant Professor Educator, School of Environment and Sustainability

Braunstein Hall


Evolutionary & Aquatic Ecology: Patterns of distribution and diversity; Evolution of life history, morphology, behavior; Dynamics of temperate and arctic lakes and streams
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Jack Michael Mewhirter

Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

Crosley Tower


Dr. Mewhirter's research expertise is in the subfield of public policy: a  field of study which examines the emergence of societal problems and inefficiencies, the policy tools available to correct them, the organizations charged with the implementation of policies, the factors that impact organizational effectiveness, and the evaluation of implemented policies.

His published and ongoing research focuses on two, distinct topics. His main area of research focuses on the study of complex governance systems (generally in the context of water governance): governance structures where decision making authority is delegated to multiple organizations that (often) collectively make policy decisions across a set of interdependent decision making venues (or “forums”). His research in this area generally attempts to answer two, related questions: 1) How do organizations build political influence across the system to better influence the forums in which they participate? 2) How does forum interdependence affect the policy decisions made in the related forums?

His second area of interest focuses on the evaluation of current policies of pressing public importance. Here, he utilizes a variety of quantitative techniques to assess the causal impact of public policies and tease out whether and to what extent they can be considered effective. 
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Autumn Leigh Miller

Associate Professor Educator, School of Environment and Sustainability



Autumn earned her MA degree from UC’s Department of Communication and her Ph.D from the University of Utah. She studies ways we can use strategic communication (e.g., PR, advertising, marketing, social media) to help the public good, particularly in the areas of human health and the environment.  She is the director of UCommunicate, a student-led consulting and communication services firm. Autumn has experience working and consulting in the academic, business, and nonprofit sectors and has been teaching in higher education for the last 13 years. She also has expertise in online teaching.
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Joshua H Miller

Asst Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

509 Geology-Physics Building


I study the ecological information contained in natural accumulations of bones (death assemblages). Through a multidisciplinary approach that brings together ecology, wildlife management, conservation biology, paleobiology, and GIS, my research explores the ecological data contained in bone accumulations from the modern, sub-fossil, and fossil realms. Using fieldwork, quantitative analyses, and statistical modeling, I am refining our understanding of the biological data that is contained in bone accumulations and providing new tools for recovering those data from recent, historical, and fossil accumulations.

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Carolyn Kelley Patterson

Asst Professor - Visiting, School of Environment and Sustainability

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Kevin N Raleigh

Department Head, Associate Professor Educator, School of Environment and Sustainability

401-I Braunstein Hall


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Shaunak Sastry

Associate Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability



Dr. Shaunak Sastry, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Cincinnati and Director of The Cincinnati Project, a center for community-engaged research. His research and teaching interests are in the areas of health and culture, globalization and health, and the cultural politics of infectious diseases. His work combines ethnographic and field-based methods with critical analysis of public discourses of health. His work has been published in leading international peer-reviewed journals like Health CommunicationCommunication Theory, Journal of Health Communication, Culture, Health & Sexuality, Frontiers in Communication, and Journal of International andIntercultural Communication, in addition to several book chapters and more than 40 paper presentations at national and international conferences. He is a senior editor of the journal Health Communicationand sits on the editorial boards of several other academic journals. He is the Chair-elect of the National Communication Association’s (NCA) Research Council and is immediate past-chair of the Asian and Pacific American Caucus at NCA.
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Tomasz F Stepinski

Thomas Jefferson Chair Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

215 Braunstein Hall


Space Informatics, planetary geomorphology, land change science, remote sensing, GIS
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Yujie Sun

Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

722 Rieveschl Hall


Group page: www.yujiesun.org

Yujie Sun (孙宇杰) received a B.S. degree in Chemistry from Fudan University in 2005. He then pursued graduate studies in inorganic photochemistry with Prof. Claudia Turro at The Ohio State University and obtained his Ph.D. degree in 2010. Subsequently, he joined the group of Prof. Christopher J. Chang at the University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory as a postdoctoral scholar, working on renewable energy catalysis. Yujie started his independent career as an Assistant Professor at Utah State University in 2013, moved to the University of Cincinnati as an Associate Professor in 2018, and was promoted to Professor in 2023. His group is interested in developing and understanding inexpensive materials and complexes for energy catalysis and biomedical applications.
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Eric J Tepe

Assistant Professor
Curator of the Herbarium
, School of Environment and Sustainability

703B Rieveschl Hall


Plant systematics, including taxonomy, phylogenetics, biogeography, and diversification of “giant genera” – those with over 1000 species – including Piper (Piperaceae) and Solanum (Solanaceae).  Evolution of ant-plant associations.  Visit my webpage for more details.  Click here for the CINC herbarium webpage.
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Susanna T.Y. Tong

Professor, Director of 2+2 Program in Geography, A&S Geography and Environmental Studies, School of Environment and Sustainability

400D Braunstein Hall


Applied Ecology, Urban Environment, Ecological Risk Assessment, Ecosystem Services, Global Changes, Watershed Management, Hydrologic and Water Quality Modeling, Land Use Modeling, Non-point Source Pollution Abatement, Wildfire, Heavy Metal Contaimination
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Jennifer Wohlfarth

Educator Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability



Jenny Wohlfarth is an award-winning magazine journalist with 30+ years of professional experience who has been teaching journalism at UC since 2000, originally as a part-time adjunct instructor while she was working full-time as a magazine editor. After completing her M.A. degree in English (emphasis in editing and publishing) at UC, she helped build the UC Journalism Program -- which later became the UC Department of Journalism -- while teaching courses in feature writing, magazine writing, news writing, editing and specialty reporting topics.

Now a full professor (in the educator/teaching track), she teaches a wide range of courses across the curriculum: Feature Writing & In-Depth Reporting, Magazine Writing, Environmental Journalism, Science & Nature Writing, Travel Writing, Women in Journalism, Advanced Magazine Writing, Magazine Publishing, and International Field Study in Journalism -- all courses she created and developed. She was the department's first director of undergraduate studies, from 2012-2019, and has served as faculty adviser for several student journalism groups, including the UC chapters of the Society of Professional Journalists (UC-SPJ), Association of Black Journalists (UC-ABJ) and a handful of student-run online magazines.

Professor Wohlfarth’s work has been published in numerous national magazines, covering topics ranging from art/design, architecture, agriculture and animals to business, environmental and social issues, nature/science and travel writing. She has been honored by numerous reporting awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for her work in feature/magazine writing, beat reporting and lifestyle reporting.

Her journalism career began shortly after she completed an undergraduate degree in creative writing (composition) at the University of Evansville (Indiana). She landed a full-time job in journalism—at a horse magazine in Texas—and quickly fell in love with reporting. She is a former staff editor/managing editor/executive editor at several national magazines—including the Cincinnati-based design publications HOW Magazine and I.D. (International Design) Magazine—and is a longtime contributing editor to Cincinnati Magazine. She is vice-president of the Greater Cincinnati Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and an active member of the national SPJ, the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) and, most recently, the National Association of Science Writers.

Professor Wohlfarth has been honored with numerous teaching/advising awards, including the UC Department of English William C. Boyce Award for Excellence in Teaching, the SPJ David L. Eshelman Outstanding Campus Adviser Award and the University of Cincinnati Honors Program’s Excellence in Teaching Award—all honors based on nominations from her students and advisees. In 2022, she was nominated by a student for the prestigious UC George Barbour Award for Good Faculty-Student Relations.  

She has a keen interest in active-learning techniques and has co-presented on SoTL (scholarship of teaching and learning) topics at numerous conferences, including the International Lilly Conference for College Teaching and the International Society of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Annual Conference. She is an advocate of innovative, student-centered instruction methods, and has frequently been tapped to lead training sessions for faculty on active-learning techniques, contemplative teaching strategies and methods for increasing student engagement. Her professional work and her involvement in teaching faculty-led study-abroad courses for the UC Honors Program have enabled her to travel to and write about fascinating places around the world, including Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Namibia and Iceland.
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Yurena Yanes

Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Sustainability

520 Geology-Physics Building


My research program examines the response of biological communities to environmental and human stressors. The sustainability and integrity of ecological resources are increasingly uncertain as climate warms and Earth faces a biodiversity crisis. To remedy this situation, scientists must understand the magnitude, direction and rate of biotic responses to environmental and human impacts. However, environmental and anthropogenic factors operate simultaneously and therefore, they are difficult to discriminate using short-term ecological/human-lifespan scales. My work incorporates a longer-term (geological) dimension through three sequential intervals in the recent geologic past: (1) before humans, which I study with paleontological records, (2) during aboriginal (pre-industrial) occupation, by investigating archeological sources; and (3) in post-industrial times, by measuring modern and historical ecological records. The group of organisms I use to examine biotic-environment-human interactions belong to the Phylum Mollusca (primarily terrestrial gastropods) because they are plentiful, sensitive to environmental and human interference, and less investigated yet more threatened than other present-day major animal groups. To investigate molluscs, I integrate data and techniques from multiple disciplines including isotope geochemistry, taphonomy, paleoecology, Quaternary geochronology, archeology and the emerging field of conservation paleobiology.


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Abbey Erickson

Program Coordinator, School of Environment and Sustainability



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Ashley D. Hutchison

Business Administrator, School of Environment and Sustainability



Headshot of Ekaterina  Katzarova

Ekaterina Katzarova

Program Manager, School of Environment and Sustainability



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Amanda M. Powell

Financial Administrator 2, School of Environment and Sustainability



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Kristin Nicole Rice

Financial Administrator 1, School of Environment and Sustainability