"I see it as my job to help students learn, and help them figure out what works for them, where they are.”
Lynsey LeMay is a firm believer that most learning happens outside of the classroom. It's one of the reasons why she incorporates in-the-field learning into her classes, bringing her students outdoors to experience geology in nature, instead of in a textbook.
She has always been interested in the natural world, so it's not surprising that she chooses a hands-on method to share it with others. LeMay began exploring majoring in Geology once she realized that an interest of hers while growing up could be a viable career option. Between receiving a bachelor's degree from the College of William & Mary and earning a master's from the Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences, LeMay took a position with the American Geosciences Institute, and began her teaching career as an adjunct professor at Thomas Nelson. A full-time instructor since 2013, LeMay teaches Physical Geology, Historical Geology, Oceanography and Application of Scientific Research.
"Everyone learns differently," she says. "Everyone finds different topics interesting. I see it as my job to help students learn, and help them figure out what works for them, where they are."
Almost a decade into teaching at Thomas Nelson, LeMay is continually updating her teaching methods, finding inspiration from professional development opportunities and student feedback. In addition to in-field lessons, she incorporates small-group discussions and bringing samples in to the classroom. However, the field studies are the lessons that make the greatest impression. "The most miserable days in the field are always going to be your most memorable," LeMay notes.