Spotlight Faculty

Dr. Kristy Halverson, Assistant Professor

Dr. Halverson came to Southern Miss in 2009 from her home state of Missouri. She has always wanted to become a college biology professor. After having spent the majority of her academic life investigating ecology and evolutionary biology, she carved a new path along her journey and found a new world of educational research:

"I am very interested in understanding how college students learn and communicate biology through images, such as the evolutionary tree of life. We've all heard that 'a picture says a thousand words.' We use images to communicate with each other every single day. We share memories with our family and friends by looking through photo albums, post images on social networking sites and help each other learn complex concepts by drawing diagrams. By understanding how people make sense of the images we use, we can figure out how to create the same story and open effective communication."

Dr. Halverson loves her position at Southern Miss which allows her the opportunity to explore her area of research and interact with wonderful students. Coming spring 2012, Dr. Halverson will be teaching an Ireland Biology Field Experience course:

"I was inspired to offer this course after my many opportunities traveling around the globe. I've been given the opportunity to take up to 14 students with me to explore the Emerald Isle and learn firsthand about the local biodiversity and conservation efforts. This course is going to be special because we'll also be fortunate enough to help out the local community through multiple service-learning projects. I am beyond excited for the chance to be immersed in the Irish culture while exploring the Cliffs of Moher, Kayaking with Fungi the Dolphin, building habitats for local wildlife, and gaining the gift of gab after kissing the Blarney Stone."