Our Team

Kathryn Stevenson

Kathryn is lucky enough to be leading this talented group. She joined the faculty in Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management in 2016, but has been at NC State since 2011 as a grad student (PhD in Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology, 2014; Postdoc, Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology, 2014-16).  She has a BS in Biology from Davidson College and spent eight years working in informal and formal education settings at Catalina Island Marine Institute, Drew School, and Woods Charter School.

Current graduate Students

Julianne Reas (jlreas@ncsu.edu) is an MS student co-advised by Dr. Stevenson and Dr. Yu-Fai Leung.  With Kathryn, she’s looking at how to best measure connection to nature among diverse audiences, and with Yu-Fai, she is developing a model of ambassadorship among Antarctic Tour Guides. Julianne is also a Global Change Fellow with the SE Climate Adaptation Science Center.

Current Undergraduate Researchers

Sarah Krementz (sbkremen@ncsu.edu) is an undergraduate student majoring in Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology and minoring in Plant Biology. She assists with the Citizen Science & Community Learning project and is interested in the intersection between a community’s ability to learn environmental information and how they apply it.


Hanne Parks (hjparks@ncsu.edu) is an undergraduate student majoring in Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology, minoring in Environmental Education. She is also working towards her NC EE Certification.

Interested in joining?

Undergraduates: Please reach out to Dr. Stevenson (kathryn_stevenson@ncsu.edu)!  Depending on the semester, we sometimes have regular lab meetings, or sometimes it is more informal.  We’d love to get you involved.

Prospective graduate students and post-docs: If you are interested in joining the lab, please send a cover letter, CV, and writing sample (kathryn_stevenson@ncsu.edu).  You can join our lab majoring in either Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management or Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology.  If I have an immediate opportunity and you are a good fit, I will contact you directly.  I also will post any available positions on this site, the NAAEE jobs board, our Twitter account, and other relevant boards.  You may also email any of our current students to learn more about what it’s like working with us.  We will likely be seeking 1-2 postdocs for the 2022-23 academic year, but not graduate students this cycle. 

Former Graduate Students & Postdocs

Lauren Gibson graduates officially in May 2022, but has begun work with NOAA as a special advisor.  Her focus is on youth empowerment.

Hannah Mazeski is expected to graduate in summer 2022 with her MS.  Her thesis work looks at how social media can be used as a way to evaluate the DEIJ initiatives of the National Park System. Hannah is co-advised by Kathryn and Dr. Bethany Cutts.

Zhenzhen Zhang earned her PhD in December 2021 with an interdisciplinary project linking together stormwater management, green schoolyards, and flood modeling in the city of Raleigh.

Caitlin Reilly (cereill3@ncsu.edu) graduated with her MS in summer 2021 after working on the Agritourism & Local Foods project and studying how getting kids on farms may promote support for local food systems through families.  Caitlin is now the assistant director of Davidson Outdoors at Davidson College.

Brent Jackson (sbjackso@ncsu.edu) graduated with his PhD in summer of 2021. His dissertation looked at different predictors of environmental engagement and connection to nature, including in the context of the pandemic. Brent is now an instructor at Florida Gulf State University.

Jenna Hartley (jenna_hartley@ncsu.edu) graduated with her PhD in spring 2022.  She worked  on the Citizen Science & Community Learning project understanding how citizen science-based EE with kids may translate to community-level learning.  She’s not a postdoctoral researcher with UNC’s Institute for the Environment.

Danielle Lawson graduated with her PhD in 2019 and was a USDA NIFA Postdoctoral Research Fellow until summer 2020, when she transitioned to Pennsylvania State University as an assistant professor with a joint appointment in the Recreation, Parks & Tourism Management  and the Curriculum and Instruction departments.

Rachel Szczytko worked on the Muddy Sneakers project and graduated December 2017. Rachel is now working as an associate program officer with the Pisces Foundation in San Francisco, CA.

Elke Grether worked on the USDA NIFA Agritourism & Education project and is now pursuing other opportunities back in Oklahoma.

Graduated undergraduate researchers
Adrian Chamberlain, Mary Helmer, Georgie Babechenko, Emma Feichter, Jocelyn Fifer, Emily Griffith, Katelyn Higgins, Alex Johnson, Katelyn McDow, Patsy McKee Huy Nguyen, Anna Poston, Alex Trimarchi, Nick Londono, Blake Wiegand