Diversity, Equity, Inclusion

About Us | Mission & Vision | Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion | GES DEI Committee

About Us

Welcome to the Department of Geography & Earth Sciences (GES)!

We invite you to explore our webpages on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) wherein our aim is to cultivate and maintain an inclusive and supportive environment for all students, staff and faculty. No matter where you come from, no matter your background or life experience, you are part of the GES family and we welcome you with open arms, minds and hearts. It is our expressed desire that you feel a sense of belonging, that you find balance between studies and personal enrichment, and that you thrive within your specific major and our department as a whole.

On our GES DEI webpages you will find plenty of information to support you throughout your journey with us, including academics and research, mentoring opportunities, departmental and campus-wide advocacy and support, and a well-rounded set of resources

Mission & Vision

Our DEI Mission is to uphold a geography and earth sciences learning community rich in the study and appreciation of diverse contributions and perspectives. We share a deep understanding of the existence and consequences of social inequities, and advocate for equity and justice in policy and practice. We affirm individual excellence across all backgrounds and collaborate to cultivate inclusive classrooms. And we commit to protect our GES community against the harmful effects of racism, discrimination and bias.

Our DEI Vision is to be a department in which all of its members feel welcome and valued across race/ethnicity, nationality, gender, gender identity and sexual orientation, faith practice, socioeconomic background, age, and veteran or disability status. We desire for each individual to have a sense of belonging, where all opinions matter, where there are equitable opportunities for study, research, outreach and overall intellectual growth, and with ongoing self and departmental reflections that address micro to macro-level bias. As we grow in size and diversity, we continually strive for equitable and inclusive classrooms and other spaces of learning and intellectual exchange.

Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion

The Department of Geography & Earth Sciences is an academic community, welcoming of diverse peoples and perspectives. We are committed to the equitable treatment of all students, staff and faculty and work towards the elimination of discrimination and bias within our curricula, classrooms and department culture as a whole. We value, respect and celebrate the unique contributions of each individual within the GES community and strive to provide equitable access to resources and opportunities.

GES DEI Committee

Department of Geography and Earth Sciences Diversity, Equity, Inclusion ad hoc committee members

Dr. Sandra Clinton
• Research Associate Professor • GES Honors Director
Urban Stream Ecology, River Restoration, Molecular Methods in Freshwater Ecosystems
McEniry 315

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Dr. Casey Davenport
• Associate Professor
Severe Local Storms, Mesoscale Processes, Science Education

Teaching and Research Interests Dynamics of severe storms Mesoscale meteorology Numerical modeling Improving STEM education Read More

Dr. Sara Gagné
• Associate Professor
Urban Ecology, Landscape Ecology, Biodiversity Conservation
McEniry 314

Teaching and Research Interests Urban Ecology Landscape Ecology Effects of urbanization on biodiversity Read More

Dr. Colleen Hammelman
• Associate Professor • Geography MA Coordinator • CHARP Director
Urban Geography, Food Justice, Immigration
McEniry 433

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Dr. Fushcia-Ann Hoover
• Assistant Professor
Green Infrastructure, Environmental Justice, Urban Planning, Socio-ecological Systems
McEniry 423

Dr. Fushcia-Ann Hoover is an interdisciplinary researcher specializing in social-ecological urban systems. She employs a range of approaches and perspectives that include environmental justice, green infrastructure performance and urban planning, evaluating the impacts of green infrastructure planning when framed by race, justice and place-making. She is the founder of EcoGreenQueen LLC, a company dedicated to […]

Dr. Katherine Idziorek
• Assistant Professor
Community Resilience, Disaster Preparedness, Social Infrastructure, Urban Design, Multimodal Transportation Planning
McEniry 311

Katherine Idziorek, AICP, PhD, is a community-engaged researcher who examines the role of social networks and social infrastructure in community-scale resilience and disaster preparedness. Bridging the disciplines of hazard mitigation, urban sociology, and urban planning, Katherine’s research explores the role of place-based resources in supporting community resilience and wellbeing. Before turning to a full-time academic […]

Terry Shirley
• Department Associate Chair • Meteorology Undergraduate Coordinator• Senior Lecturer
Meteorology, Weather Forecasting, Synoptic Meteorology, Winter Storms

Teaching and Research Interests Weather Forecasting Synoptic Meteorology Severe Weather Winter Weather Education M.S. (2004) Meteorology, The Pennsylvania State University B.S. (2002) Meteorology, The Pennsylvania State University Profile My door is always open! That is my policy for all students, faculty, and staff. If you ever have a question about advising, course options, career aspirations […]

Dr. Heather Smith
• Interim Department Chair • Professor • Levine Scholars Faculty Fellow
Urban Social Geography, Community Engaged Scholarship

Teaching and Research Interests Urban & Social Geography Immigrant Settlement & Adjustment Globalizing Cities & New Gateways Urban Revitalization & Gentrification Socio-spatial Polarization Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR) Read More

Dr. Michelle Zuñiga
• Assistant Professor
Neighborhood change, Latinx communities, Community Planning, Environmental Justice
McEniry 308

I am an urban and community planner whose research focuses on resident perspectives of neighborhood change occurring in areas undergoing increased investment towards sustainable urban development. I am most interested in learning how low-income communities and communities of color experience the benefits and disruptions of neighborhood change and their implications for environmental, social, and economic […]

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