Krista James
Krista James visits Death Valley National Park
on a family trip out West. She grew up in Texas.


What's new in your field? 

As the environmental science program director, I work with our advisory board to improve the curricula of our program and the internship and job opportunities for our students. The program includes four concentrations: aquatic biology, environmental health, land resources and plant science innovations.

Why do you love teaching, especially at UW-Stout? 

I teach environmental science and sustainability courses. The students in these courses leave with a greater understanding of global environmental problems and sustainable solutions. Knowing that I'm making a difference for the future of our planet keeps me motivated to always do my best with my teaching.

What’s your favorite teaching memory, moment or student? 

One of my favorite teaching activities is training Biology 111 students to monitor the water quality and overall health of Galloway Creek, a small urban stream that runs directly through the heart of Menomonie. I also organize community service projects for Biology 111 students. Among the projects we've pursued are: stenciling storm drains to prevent water pollution, stream cleanups, invasive species removal and conducting Recyclemania educational and promotional activities.

What’s interesting about you that your students might not know? 

I love reading historical novels. I also enjoy spending hours and hours in my vegetable garden. I try not to judge people. My philosophy is when in doubt, assume good intent.

If you could interview anyone, who would it be and why? 

I would love to interview Jane Goodall. She works with local communities in developing nations to educate children about the importance of preserving biodiversity.



Five Questions

About Krista

» Faculty Profile

Title: Senior lecturer, biology department; environmental science program director; chair of Senate of Academic Staff

Teaching focus, expertise: Environmental science and sustainability

Background: Originally from Pipe Creek, Texas, James earned a B.S. degree at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She worked as a research assistant for the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in the Panama Canal and the Charles Darwin Research Station in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. “I learned a tremendous amount about other cultures and developed a heightened awareness of global poverty and habitat destruction.” She earned an M.S. degree in agronomy at the University of Georgia and pursued coursework toward a Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. She has been teaching at UW-Stout since 1999.

Research interests: Sustainability and environmental education

Family, hobbies: She and her husband have lived in Menomonie for more than 20 years. They have three children. They like to camp and hike in “our wonderful national parks.”

August 2014