Inspiring Teacher: Jessie Rock, lecturer in geosciences
Published May 2019
Jessie Rock teaches introductory geology labs, physical geology labs and Earth Through Time geology labs. She uses NDSU’s extensive collections of minerals, rocks, fossils and other physical specimens from across the planet to give students a truly hands-on experience. Her students also get to work augmented reality sand tables to learn and understand topographic maps in a fun and engaging way.
Rock earned a master’s degree in environmental and conservation sciences at NDSU and a bachelor’s degree in geosciences at Minnesota State University Moorhead.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE BEST ABOUT TEACHING?
I love enthusiastic students who are genuinely interested in learning about the planet they live on.
WHAT IS YOUR TEACHING PHILOSOPHY?
The best courses are engaging and fun. Interest promotes learning. Teach concepts, not facts.
WHAT HAVE YOUR LEARNED FROM YOUR STUDENTS?
When students ask tough questions that I don’t have a ready answer for, it pushes me to work harder at providing opportunities for us to learn new things together.
WHAT IS SOMETHING EVERY STUDENT SHOULD EXPERIENCE BEFORE THEY GRADUATE FROM NDSU?
Every NDSU student should have the opportunity to interact with the tremendous natural science collections at NDSU. These specimens are accessible to the public at the Hall of Biodiversity pop-up museum each year as part of the NDSU Darwin Day celebration. Specimens of particular interest include casts of a narwhal skull, a giraffe skull and neck and live reptiles.