Monia Haselhorst, Ph.D.Associate Professor of Ecosystem Science & Management; Department Chair of Environmental, Earth, & Ecosystem Sciences
719-486-4218 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ph.D., Program in Ecology, Department of Botany, University of Wyoming (2017). Advisor: Dr. C. Alex Buerkle. Dissertation title: Genomic and geographic diversity patterns in the genus Picea in western North America.
- M.S., Biology, Department of Plant Ecology, Uppsala University, Sweden, (2007). Advisor: Dr. Brita Svensson. Thesis Title: Can Management of Hay-Meadows Cause Speciation? A demographic and genetic study of early and late flowering morphs of Succisa pratensis.
Teaching & Learning
Monia joined the Natural Resource Management Program in the fall 2019. Her goal as an educator and mentor, is to engage her students in learning and for it to be a positive component of their undergraduate experience - not only as a stepping stone to a degree, but also to enrich their everyday life. To accomplish this goal, Monia’s courses are experiential, highly interactive, and based on the student’s participation in discussions and team activities that require them to think about real-world problems in a collaborative setting. Being a teacher is very rewarding to Monia and she genuinely enjoy working with students, to see them develop knowledge and grow as people. When students take her courses, she wants them to feel comfortable asking questions, be inspired and connected to the content, and develop ownership over their personal learning. Monia is convinced that when students enjoy a subject and feel motivated to participate in class, they gain the desire to learn as well as to apply their new-found knowledge in new situations. Moreover, when active and engaged learning is incorporated into classes, it tends to close achievement gaps for underrepresented minority students, women, and first-generation students.
Monia’s research experience prior to joining CMC, strengthened her understanding of the natural world and how science is done, which she brings into her interactions with her students. Monia’s broad research interests revolve around biogeographical patterns of genetic and ecological variation in plants at different scales (molecular to ecosystem; local to global). In her dissertation projects, she used an interdisciplinary approach integrating genomics, ecology, GIS, and statistical models to investigate species of spruce across their western North American range. Her main goal was to characterize factors that contribute to the maintenance and distribution of divergent species in this genus.
Monia’s curiosity about the natural world lead her to investigate a spectrum of species living in various habitats, for example devil's-bit scabious (Succisa pratensis), sunflowers (Helianthus annuus and H. petiolaris), cottonwoods (Populus deltoides and P. angustifoila), spruce (Picea spp.), and field mustard (Brassica rapa). Moreover, during her time as a doctorate student at the University of Wyoming, she learned about many different ecological systems, from fish in lakes and streams, Penstemon living on sand dunes, alpine butterflies and their hosts, native vs. invasive species interactions, plant-soil microbiome relationships, to forest disturbance management.
Living and working in a small mountain town makes Monia exceedingly happy! When not being indoors or outdoors with her students, you can find Monia running, hiking, or skiing on the numerous mountain trails around Leadville and beyond. She often stops to take a closer look at a plant or simply to take in the beautiful scenery and listen to nature’s sounds.
What Students Say
“Monia is a great instructor. Before I took a class with Monia, I had never experienced a structure like she facilitates in her classrooms. She is extremely engaged and available to all students. She is also exuberantly passionate about what she does and very confident about what she knows and willing to admit when she doesn’t. I absolutely loved the open learning environment she provided and felt generally accepted and aware of my own learning in her classroom. Her implementations of reflection in learning are phenomenal. Monia is one of the best and inspiring instructors/mentors I have ever had.” /Anonymous; from student course evaluation in the Spring 2020.
“I really enjoyed the dynamics of this class. I gained a lot of important and vital information. I was taught how to reflect on my perspective of what I'm learning. The support and making us reflect is appreciated. It makes me feel like I actually accomplished something.”
“I really enjoyed this class as it was different from any other science class I have taken. I have learned a lot of useful academic skills in this class that I will use in other classes.”
“Monia's teaching style stood out to myself and the rest of my peers. She was more of a facilitator than any teacher I've had before. She demanded independent thinking and creativity from us as well as group work and team building in new and challenging ways. She emphasized the importance of experiential learning which was extremely powerful.”