Mike Arthur


I'm Mike Arthur of the Department of Geosciences at Penn State's University Park campus, and my background is in marine geology. My research is focused on paleooceanography, which is to say the geologic history of the oceans including geochemistry, stable isotopes, and patterns of past global change. I grew up in Southern California (San Bernardino, of "Route 66" fame) where I did develop a love for the sea (as a way to get out of the hot, dry desert) that began with board surfing at SoCal beaches and has led to traversing the high seas on various oceanographic research expeditions and as part of the Ocean Drilling Program. After my PhD (Princeton, 1979), I worked at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and at the Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island, among other places, before arriving at Penn State (January, 1991). Like Chris, I have a family (two fine daughters) and my spouse (Jan) is a geologist who evolved into a shepherd--we have a small farm on which we raise Icelandic breed and Merino sheep (for breeding stock, wool and meat) and some greens and vegetables that Jan sells at local farmers markets. When I am not teaching, doing research, or farming, I enjoy playing guitar and mandolin and volunteering for our local watershed group.

Course Spotlight

From Meteorology to Mitigation: Understanding Global Warming (METEO 469) - learn about the fundamentals of climate change and its impact on societal, environmental, and economic policies. Visit the course.

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Richard Alley

Dr. Richard Alley has been with us since the beginning, with one of our first OPEN courses - Geology of the National Parks. See what he has to say about the OPEN.ED effort over ten years later.