» Faculty joins Geography Department

larabryantNew to the Geography department this year is Dr. Lara M.P. Bryant.She joins the faculty at Keene adding her expertise in geographic education.She earned her doctorate in Geographic Education from Texas State University-San Marcos. At Texas State she was actively involved in the Texas Alliance for Geographic Education in a multitude of roles including teacher consultant and conference coordinator.Dr. Bryant is currently the new coordinator for the New Hampshire Geographic Alliance, and will be engaged in outreach programs with the public school system throughout New Hampshire.

Dr. Bryant has ten years experience teaching geography in both rural and urban secondary schools.At Texas State University she taught introductory courses for World Geography and Geographic Information Systems. Dr. Bryant currently teaches Introduction to World Geography, Geography for Educators and GeoSpatial Technologies for K-12.Dr. Bryant’s research interests include GIS in secondary education, affective education, informal geographic education, and spatial cognition. Dr. Bryant’s international experiences include living in Germany, traveling to China as a Fulbright participant and working in Chile to help develop online geography modules for the Association of American Geographers Center for Global Education.

» Chris Brehme receives 2-year award from SeaGrant to study lobster fishing and endangered whale interaction

Chris Brehme, Assistant Professor in the Geography Department, is part of a multi-partner collaboration led by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution that received a two-year award from the Northeast SeaGrant Consortium to analyze the potential interaction between endangered whales and lobster gear along the Maine coast. Other partners include the Institute for Broadening Participation, Maine Lobstermen’s Association and New England Aquarium.

Heather Tetrault of Maine Lobstermen's Assocation and a Maine lobsterfishermen document fishing areas
Heather Tetrault of Maine Lobstermen's Assocation and a Maine lobster fisherman document fishing areas

With the help of geography major Amy Curran, Chris is using Geographic Information Systems
to analyze information collected at small meetings in dozens of fishing harbors. At these meetings, lobstermen use paper charts and pens to indicate the location and timing of trap placement. These data will be combined with whale sightings information as part of a risk reduction model that the researchers hope will inform a more balanced approach to conservation management.

» Professor Rydant teaches at University of Salzburg, Austria

Professor Rydant has returned from Austria where he taught and conducted research at the University of Salzburg. During their spring semester he offered two courses in the Department of Geography and Geology: a graduate course in Natural Resource and Waste Management on a Global Base and a seminar in The Global Economy: Political and Economic Systems across Developed and Developing Regions. Dr. Rydant also conducted continuing research with Professor Wolfgang Kern on the process and patterns of migration of aging populations.

» Geography faculty attend Geographic Education Conference in Puerto Rico

700 geographic K-20 educators from across North America gathered to attend the National Council for Geographic Education Annual Conference, San Juan, Puerto Rico September 23-27, 2009

Among the attendees were Keene State graduate J.J Prior (2009 Social Sciences), Professor A.L. Rydant (Geography), and former faculty member Kristin Alvarez (now at University of Redlands, CA). The group presented a paper entitled ‘Blogging from the Field: Challenges and Successes,’ which focused on student blogging as part of a geography/service learning field course in Ecuador.

Funding for the conference was provided by the New Hampshire Geographic Alliance.

» Dr. Chris Brehme joins Geography Department

Chris BrehmeChris Brehme joined the faculty of the Department of Geography in the Fall of 2009. Dr. Brehme recently completed a Ph.D. in Geography at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, with an emphasis in Geographic Information Science. At Buffalo, he was a Fellow in the Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT), an NSF-funded program that promotes interdisciplinary training in the sciences. At Keene State, Dr. Brehme teaches courses in Physical Geography, GIS, Remote Sensing and Cartography. Before earning his Ph.D., he worked as a GIS professional for community development and environmental organizations in Maine, and helped rural communities build local GIS capacity. Dr. Brehme’s current research interests center on Human-Environment Interaction, particularly in coastal environments. He is also interested in geographic cognition, participatory GIS and geographic visualization. His research and training in Geography have taken Dr. Brehme to the Pacific Northwest, Great Britain, Western Australia, coastal New England and the Canadian Maritimes.