A conversation between Laura Spence (Sterling College) and Bart Everson (XULA) on teaching, learning, and ecological thinking.
Laura Spence, Ph.D., is originally from South Shropshire, England, a sheep-grazed land reminiscent of the Vermont of 150 years ago. Laura’s journey from Shropshire to the Northwoods, via New Zealand and Mongolia, has been one always in pursuit of the study of plant and fungal ecology. Her particular research interests lie in the interaction between plant communities and aspects of global change such as climate change and invasive species. Her Ph.D. research took her to the mountain beech forests of the Southern Alps, New Zealand, where she investigated the roles of forest dynamics, natural disturbances and mycorrhizal fungi on the invasive spread of an exotic understorey herbaceous weed. Following this, she joined the PIRE Mongolia project that investigated the ecological consequences of climate change and grazing pressures by nomadic pastoralism in northern Mongolia.
Bart Everson is a media artist and creative generalist at Xavier University's Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Faculty Development. His recent work draws on integrative learning, activism, critical perspectives on technology, and Earth-based spiritual paths.
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