Field Course title

Sustainability and Conservation: Citizen Science and Service Learning in Australia


Dr. Jacqueline McLaughlin

Dr. Jacqueline S. McLaughlin

The Pennsylvania State University - Lehigh Valley
Associate Professor of Biology
CHANCE Founding Director
2017/18 Jefferson Science Fellow

Dr. Jacqueline McLaughlin is an Associate Professor of Biology at Penn State Lehigh Valley, and Founding Director of Penn State's award-winning, international, environmental education engaged scholarship program called CHANCE (Connecting Humans and Nature through Conservation Experiences). Whether she is working as a cell and developmental biologist on cancer cell lines with her undergraduate students in her research laboratory or as a conservation scientist studying the effects of global climate change on ecosystem diversity and dynamics with high school teachers and undergraduates in the fields of Australia, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, or Panama, her overall mission is to create learning environments wherein students, at any level, are inspired and effectively learn science by doing actual research. As a scholar, she has published, as an author or editor, 65 publications in peer-reviewed books, journals, proceedings, and online environments, and has gratefully accepted numerous awards at the local, state, and national levels – all of which attest to her expertise in undergraduate teaching and learning, teacher professional development, and international programming and education. Dr. McLaughlin prides herself in being a visionary who effectively "reimagines" science educational interfaces, course delivery, and programs – in both traditional or non-traditional settings. Her experiences as a master teacher of biology, research scientist in the field of cell and developmental biology, education researcher in the field of biology teaching and learning, and director of a university-wide international education program have also provided her expert training in creating effective web-based educational materials and interfaces, partnership building (CHANCE has 45 partners worldwide), and leadership skills. Dr. McLaughlin is an appointed U.S. National Academies Medicine Jefferson Science Fellow.

Full biography »

Dr. Fadigan

Dr. Kathy Fadigan

The Pennsylvania State University - Abington College
Assistant Professor of Science Education
Program Chair for Education and Rehabilitation & Human Services

Dr. Fadigan is an Assistant Professor of Science Education and the Program Chair for Rehabilitation & Human Services (RHS) degree at the Abington College. She earned her Ed.D. in Curriculum, Instruction and Technology in Education from Temple University in 2003. She has been a full-time faculty member at Penn State Abington since 2005. She teaches courses in science education, sustainability leadership, and plant biology. She also coordinates the campus greenhouse and garden. Since 2007, she has served as a co-instructor for the CHANCE field studies in Costa Rica, Panama, and Cuba. Her research interests include informal science education, science fairs, using social media to educate adults about food waste, and gender equity in science. 

Faculty Profile »

Heather Amatore

Ellen Ariel

James Cook University, Australia
Associate Professor
College of Public Health, Medical & Vet Sciences

Centre for Sustainable Tropical Fisheries and Aquaculture
Centre for Tropical Water and Aquatic Ecosystem Research

Dr Ariel is Associate Professor in Virology at the College of Public Health, Medical and Veterinary Sciences. Her cultural background is Danish / Australian and although she grew up in Denmark, her tertiary education was in Australia, which she finished off with a PhD in Aquatic Pathobiology. Dr Ariel worked for the European Commission for 11 years as Coordinator of the 25 National Reference Laboratories for Fish Diseases in the European Union. The overall focus was on biosecurity of aquatic animals, especially aquaculture, and standardizing and harmonizing diagnostic capacity across borders to prevent spread of disease and facilitate safe trade in live fish. She was also heavily involved in harnessing and delivering scientific advice to policy makers as well as assessing and advising research directions in the EC Aquatic Animal Disease sector. After lecturing on the topic of human viruses for a number of years, Dr Ariel has recently taken on the coordinating role for the Aquatic Animal Health group at James Cook University. Her research interest is aquatic animal health in all its variations, but especially virology.Dr Ariel is the team leader of the Turtle Health Team, and instigator of the new research facility: "The Caraplace".

Heather Amatore

Heather Amatore

Heather Amatore is an Administrative Assistant at Penn State Lehigh Valley. She is the Campus Receptionist and also serves as the CHANCE Administrative Assistant. She has associate’s degrees in both Biological Science and Medical Laboratory Technology, and she is an advocate for student international education and conservation. She considers herself a nature lover and enjoys the outdoors with her husband and three children.

CHANCE Website