450 Caldwell Hall
Plants and human well-being, indigenous agriculture
North Carolina State
In addition to serving as an associate professor in the Department of Horticulture, I am also director of the American Indian Program at Cornell University, with research and teaching responsibilities in both units. My research focuses on indigenous cropping systems and plants and human well being. I lecture frequently on indigenous agriculture and its links to contemporary agricultural sustainability, and am considered a national expert in Iroquois agriculture.
My agronomic research has focused on understanding the characteristics and management options for growing open-pollinated corn, particularly traditional Iroquois varieties. More recently, using my agronomic expertise, I have been exploring Iroquois agriculture from a multi-disciplinary perspective that includes history, archeology, paleobotany, and cultural/social anthropology in order to provide a critically needed bridge between scholars in the humanities and social sciences who work in Iroquois Studies.
I teach a First-Year Writing Seminar in American Indian Studies, "Science Meets Spirit," that contrasts western science approaches to natural resource management with resource management based on indigenous knowledge. In addition, I teach a 200-level course in Horticulture, "Plants and Human Well Being," that exposes students to the multiple ways that we interact with plants and plant products in order to increase their awareness of the many non-traditional career and avocational opportunities within the field of Horticulture