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Institute of Environmental Research and Education

IERE Joint Faculty

The IERE Joint Faculty is dedicating time and focus on developing the first interdisciplinary Environmental Science B.S. Degree at UNF.  The degree will have two tracks.  Track 1 (Environmental Natural Science) will focus on training in natural and applied sciences and prepare students for graduate school and or a career that entails scientific fieldwork and or laboratory work.  Track 2 (Environmental Studies and Sustainability) will focus on the political, economic, cultural, legislative and ethical aspects of environmental issues and prepare students for graduate school and or a career in the non-profit sector, environmental management, and decision-making.

IERE Joint Faculty Members

Dr. Amber BarnesAmber Barnes, Ph.D.

Brooks College of Health

Dr. Amber Barnes is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Health in the Brooks College of Health. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in global health, global health: water, sanitation and hygiene, environmental health and public health research. Her research is focused on the prevalence of zoonotic enteric parasites among vulnerable humans, animals and their shared environment using a One Health approach. Dr. Barnes also investigates individual and household risk factors for zoonotic disease exposure surrounding water, sanitation and hygiene services and behaviors as well as human-animal contact related to culture, agriculture and gender roles.  She leads the Coastal One Health and Zoonoses lab.

Dr. Raphael CrowleyRaphael W. Crowley, Ph.D.

College of Computing, Engineering and Construction

Dr. Raphael Crowley is an Associate Professor in Civil, Coastal, and Port Engineering in the Taylor Engineering Research Institute within the College of Computing, Engineering and Construction. He teaches several courses in civil engineering related to water, fluids, coasts, and ports.  Dr. Crowley’s research is usually under the umbrella of “coastal resiliency” and has included work on underwater noise during pile driving associated with bridge construction, using geomicrobial processes to strengthen shorelines, construction of artificial oyster reefs, wave forcing on beach houses, erosion around coastal bridge foundations, and development of a maritime management plan for Duval County. Dr. Crowley has also been involved in water erosion design associated with several relatively high-profile projects including the Mario Cuomo Bridge in Tarrytown, NY, the McMicken Dam in Surprise, AZ, the Chacao Channel Bridge in Chile, and the Port of Singapore.

Dr. Josh GellersJosh Gellers, Ph.D.

College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Josh Gellers is Associate Professor of Political Science and Public Administration in the College of Arts and Sciences and Director of the MA in International Affairs program at UNF. He teaches courses in comparative politics and international relations.  Dr. Gellers is also a Research Fellow of the Earth System Governance Project, Expert with the Global AI Ethics Institute, and former Fulbright Scholar to Sri Lanka. His research, which has been cited in UN and EU reports, focuses on environmental governance, rights, and technology. He has received the Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, Outstanding International Leadership Award, and Outstanding Faculty Scholarship Award from UNF, been named Green Teacher of the Year by the U.S. Green Building Council Florida (Northeast Florida Region), and received the Environmental Achievement Award from the Jacksonville Environmental Protection Board. He is the author of The Global Emergence of Constitutional Environmental Rights (Routledge 2017) and Rights for Robots: Artificial Intelligence, Animal and Environmental Law (Routledge 2020).

Headshot of Dr. Erin Largo WightErin Largo-Wight, Ph.D. — Director

Brooks College of Health

Dr. Erin Largo-Wight is a Professor in the Department of Public Health and the Director of the Institute of Environmental Research and Education. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in public health and her research focuses on environmental health promotion.  Dr. Largo-Wight studies the impact of nature contact on stress, health, and well-being in the workplace, K-12 schools, clinical settings, and the home.  She also studies the determinants of health behaviors, especially environmental or sustainability-related behaviors (e.g., reduce single use plastic), and designs and evaluates the effectiveness of theory-based behavior change interventions.  As IERE's Director, her current focus is on environmental-related curriculum and programming development, student development and environmental leadership programs, student community engagement opportunities, community partnership and outreach, and facilitating and supporting faculty research and scholarship across the University.  

Dr. Heather TrueloveHeather Barnes Truelove, Ph.D.

College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Heather Barnes Truelove is a Professor of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences.  She teaches courses in the areas of social psychology and research methods, including conservation psychology. Her research interests center on the psychology of pro-environmental behavior including research on perceptions of environmental problems, application of behavior change theory to predict environmental behavior, and design and evaluation of behavior change interventions.  Her work has been supported by several federal agencies, including NSF and NOAA, and has been widely published and cited.  She has won numerous university and college-wide awards for teaching, research and service.