Thanks for letting everyone know about the session that you and Janis are doing.  I agree, there is definitely some complementary issues here.

Frank G.

On Apr 28, 2009, at 8:10 AM, Janis Treworgy wrote:

Dear fellow geoscience educators,
This flurry of emails pertaining to the GSA session on community college Earth scientists is exciting to see.  As one of the emails noted, there is more than one theme session for the GSA Annual Meeting in Portland that will address the unique issues and challenges for geologists that are not in a typical four-year degree program.
Janis Treworgy and I will be chairing a session for the “Lone Rangers” out there – the solitary geologists on a college campus.  This session is designed to help generate discussion and formulate connections for solo geoscience faculty that may be at community colleges, two year colleges, or four year colleges.  A solitary geologist may be located in a department outside of the discipline, such as biology or geography.  How can the faculty member keep engaged in their discipline on a campus where they are the only member of the discipline?  How are they able to meet the teaching/research requirements?  What are strategies for faculty that need to publish for P&T with limited-to-nonexistent lab space and resources?  How can they promote the creation of a geoscience-literate society when they may only be teaching general education courses?  These and other issues will be highlighted and will compliment much of what I am sure will be presented in Eric and Frank’s session.  It would be wonderful to see both sessions have strong participation at GSA this fall.
Below is the description for our theme session, #110.  Please do not hesitate to contact Janis ([log in to unmask]) or myself ([log in to unmask]) with any questions.
Title: Teaching and Research Challenges and Successes for Solitary Geologists in Academia
Session Type: Oral
Sponsor: National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT); GSA Geoscience Education Division; Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR)
Rationale: Faculty who are at community colleges and small four-year colleges may be a “lone ranger” in their program, being the only faculty member teaching in their discipline. These faculty are disconnected from teaching and research collaborations and innovations in the geosciences. Currently, there does not exist any professional organization, website, meeting, or journal dedicated to helping geoscience faculty that are the only geoscience faculty on their campus. This session will benefit faculty by providing the support of others in similar institutional situations. The GSA Portland meeting can serve as an initial attempt to bring this community of professional geosciences educators together by providing a forum for sharing their experiences in a topical session.
Thank you,
Laura Guertin
Dr. Laura Guertin, Associate Professor of Earth Sciences
Jane E. Cooper Honors Program and Campus Schreyer Honors College Coordinator
Environmental Inquiry Minor Coordinator
Penn State Brandywine
25 Yearsley Mill Road, Media, PA 19063
Office phone: (610) 892-1427     Fax: (610) 892-1490
Email:  [log in to unmask]          ePortfolio:
From: GEOEDUCATION RESEARCH INTEREST GROUP [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of PCC
Sent: Friday, April 24, 2009 11:23 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Community College Geoscience
Hello everyone...
Eric Baer (Highline Community College in Des Moines WA) and I will be co-chairing what looks like a first time event at GSA, a topical session on community college earth science programs.  Our proposal to do this was not only accepted by GSA, but is also sponsored by both NAGT and GSA GED.  Furthermore, the NSF GEO Diversity and Education program is interested helping this session go forward by providing funds that would subsidize presenter travel and expenses.  Many community college geoscience instructors don't attend conferences like GSA due to lack of funds.  The two caveats that come with this offer are that the presenters and advocates meet with NSF to discuss what they can do to aid community college earth science and that we include a list of potential speakers for the event.  It is because of this second caveat that I am writing this to all of you.  I am looking to put together in the next three weeks a list of community college instructors and university faculty involved in community college / university collaborations who would be interested in speaking at the session.  See below for a description of the session. If you have recommendations of community college or university faculty that you think would be interested in speaking and have experience in addressing the questions listed in the description, please forward me their names or have them contact me directly.  If NSF accepts the proposal from my college (Portland Community College) then we would pay for travel and conference expenses for the presenter and a student of their choosing.
Feel free to contact me if you need additional information.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Frank D. Granshaw
Earth Science Instructor
Portland Community College
Sylvania Campus
Portland, OR 
Session #T104:  Geoscience Programs at Community Colleges: Models for Success and Innovation
Frank D. Granshaw – Portland Community College, Portland Oregon
Eric M. Baer – Highline Community College, Seattle Washington
Description for publication:
Community College programs are diverse and multifaceted. This session will highlight a variety of programs and how they successfully achieve their goals.
Community College Geoscience programs are a critical part of the geoscience education system.  Because they serve more than 10 million students currently enrolled in these institutions, they play a critical role in educating the general public and future graduates of colleges, training future K-12 educators and recruiting geoscience majors from a diverse and variable pool.  This session will look at the questions that community college geoscientists face in fulfilling this mission.  Chief among these are following:

·      What makes for a strong community college earth science program?

·      Given the student population of most community colleges, what is the focus of these programs, career training, geoscience literacy, or both?

·      What strategies are useful for helping students become geoscience literate?

·      How do community college earth science department successfully encourage and prepare geoscience majors?

·      What role does university - community college and high school-community college collaborations play in making a strong program?

·      How do community college geoscience programs relate the vocational programs in their own institutions?

·      What role do community college geoscience courses have in providing science background for future teachers?

·      How do professional networks enhance the mission of community college geoscience program? 

·      Given the large number of adjunct faculty teaching community college earth science courses, how do science departments mentor these faculty to help them address these questions?

Frank D. Granshaw
Earth Science Instructor
Portland Community College
Sylvania Campus
Portland, OR