Cynthia Gill, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Physiology, Hampshire College
Cynthia Gill, assistant professor of physiology, has a B.S. in biology from the University of North Carolina, a Ph.D. in neuroendocrinology from the University of Virginia, and postdoctoral experience at the University of Texas. She is a comparative vertebrate biologist who has studied behavior and neuroendocrine regulatory mechanisms in a variety of species including the Asian musk shrew, dusky salamander, whiptail lizard, and prairie vole. Her research interests include hormonally-mediated responses to social, nutritional, and environmental stressors that effect health and behavior. Cindy’s courses include animal physiology, science of stress, brain mechanisms, hormones and disease, neuroscience of personality, stress across cultures, and neuroendocrinology. She grew up on a farm, has experience as a farm and land manager and conservation biologist, and happily continues to work with animals at the Farm Center.
Beth Hooker, Ph.D.
Sustainability Initiative Director, Hampshire College
Beth Hooker, Sustainability Initiative director, received a B.S. in chemistry and a B.A. in Asian studies from Connecticut College. She completed an M.S. in soil science, and a Ph.D. in ecology at the University of Connecticut. At Hampshire College, Beth manages initiatives related to campus and curricular sustainability, including the recently funded four transitions. These include transitions in healthy food systems, campus operations, creative curriculum, and campus culture. She worked with Hampshire faculty and staff members to create and teach in the inaugural Food, Farm, and Sustainability Institute in Summer 2012.
Brian Schultz, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Entomology and Ecology, Hampshire College
Brian Schultz, associate professor of ecology and entomology, received a B.S. in zoology, an M.S. in biology, and a Ph.D. in ecology from the University of Michigan. Brian is an agricultural ecologist and entomologist who does research at the Hampshire College Farm Center, including studies of: the effects of organic methods of pest control on pests and other arthropods in crops and in the laboratory. He has spent a number of years in Central America and the Caribbean studying methods of insect pest control. He is also interested in statistical analysis and social change. Recent courses include Terrestrial Ecology and Natural History; Ecology, Agriculture, and Society; Introduction to Statistics and Experimental Design; and Sustainable Agriculture and Organic Farming.
Jason M. Tor, PhD
Dean of the School of Natural Sciences, Hampshire College
Associate Professor of Microbiology, Hampshire College
Jason M. Tor, dean of the School of Natural Science and associate professor of microbiology, received a B.S. in soil science and a M.S. in natural resources and environmental science from the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign and a Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Jason’s courses include Soil Microbiology, Geomicrobiology, Astrobiology, Food Microbiology, and Biochemistry. These courses are inquiry-based and have a substantial student-initiated research component. Jason’s research is focused on understanding the functional diversity of bacteria in desert soils and rock varnish, biomineralization of carbonates, and mechanisms of iron reduction in respiration. He has conducted research in a variety of extreme environments, including the hydrothermal vents in Yellowstone National Park and Vulcano, Italy, hypersaline areas of Death Valley National Park, and metal-contaminated soils and sediments in Massachusetts.
CSA Program Manager, Hampshire College
Nancy Hanson was born and raised on a family dairy farm in central Connecticut. Prior to and after receiving a B.S. in horticulture from the University of Connecticut, she spent 12 years working in ornamental horticulture. In 1999, a desire to return to farming brought her to accept the position as manager of the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Program at the Hampshire College Farm Center. Under her direction, the CSA has expanded to produce organic vegetables on 15 acres of college land and in several four-season greenhouses. The CSA currently serves over 200 households in the fall and provides fresh vegetables during the winter months at an on-campus, student-run farmers market. Dedicated to the educational mission of the farm, Nancy works closely with students who are studying sustainable agriculture and food systems. She also co-teaches the class Agriculture, Food, and Human Health in the School of Natural Science.
Farm Manager, Hampshire College
Leslie Cox, as the Farm Center manager, has started and keeps running the many enterprises on the farm that include maple syrup and firewood production; bee and honey production; haying; milking cows and producing milk products; meat from beef and pork; sheep and llama production; chickens and egg production; turkey production, and keeping the farmstead maintained. Leslie grew up on a multigenerational, large cash crop dairy farm in western New York and has received degrees in agricultural production from SUNY Cobleskill and Cornell University. After working many years in the west and midwest managing farms and ranches and doing professional agricultural work he found himself back in the east, practicing and teaching skills in the emerging organic agricultural field. For many years he has been a board member and officer in the Northeast Organic Farmers Association. For over fifteen years he has been working and raising a family here on the Hampshire Farm Center, enjoying the role of helping new generations of students learn the skills of “working the land.”
Hampshire College Alumni Speaker Series:
Each week, we will host a Hampshire alum with links to local, regional, or global agriculture. Last year, we hosted such guests as Gary Hirshberg, founder of Stonyfield Farms; Howard Wein, Restaurateur; Josh Goldman, CEO and founder of Australis Aquaculture; Margaret Connors, founder of City Growers in Boston; and many more.
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