Photography provided by Paige Gunderson
Science can play a critical role in empowering parents to hear and give a voice to their intuitions. I have an unusual background that sets me apart from other pregnancy, birth, and postpartum consultants and coaches. My doctorate research was in ecology, the study of how different parts of a system interact to create a whole. When one part of a system is damaged or changed, essentially all other parts of the system respond, and an ecologist's job is to figure out how (for a video explaining ecology, click here.) The human body is an ecosystem if ever there was one. Pregnancy is a two-person biology, and so a mother's mental and physical health affect fetal development, labor outcomes, postpartum outcomes, and beyond. Unfortunately, medical professionals are rarely trained to identify how all these seemingly disparate parts fit together, even though the scientific research on many of these connections is mountainous. I want to use my unique expertise to help you navigate parenthood. I merge scientific research with your parent’s intuition to help you understand and improve your relationship with your child, enjoy parenting, and make difficult parenting decisions.
I obtained my PhD in biology (with a focus in ecology) from the University of New Mexico in May, 2015. Over 12 terms I taught biology labs to pre-med, pre-research, and pre-health science students. I had my son while in graduate school and eventually decided the work-life balance in research was not compatible with my parenting philosophies (personal details here). I have been working as a biology instructor at Central New Mexico Community College, where I teach a variety of health-science classes, as well as biology classes for non-biology majors (my LinkedIn profile is here). This job has been a blessing, because I work primarily from home and have a flexible schedule. My experiences teaching at the community college have honed my skills in breaking down and presenting complicated health science information to people who need it, but who may not have the necessary background to learn the information on their own.
What I'm working on now links to past research
- Root fungi on soybean and pennycress under different agricultural styles
- How controlled fire affects soil nutrients and microbe activity
- How plant community and nitrogen pollution affect root fungi in 2 competing alpine plants
- How plant community and nitrogen pollution affect root bacteria in 2 competing alpine plants
- Arid southwestern plant roots are dominated by fungi unknown to science