COVID-19: Essential Information

Jessica L'Roe

Assistant Professor of Geography

 work(802) 443-5387
 On Leave for the 2020-21 Academic Year
 McCardell Bicen Hall 636

I study human-environment relationships in tropical forest regions undergoing rapid change. I focus on the intersection of conservation and development initiatives, with particular attention to land access, trends in inequality and well-being, and livelihood transitions. I am currently conducting research in the Amazon Basin and the highlands of East Africa, and I am interested in similar issues in other parts of the world.

I attended graduate school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where I got a Ph.D. in Geography, an M.A. in Agricultural and Applied Economics, and a M.Sc. in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development. My undergraduate degree in Environmental Science is from the University of North Carolina, where I grew up.

When not working, I enjoy natural history, gardening, making things, and spending time with friends and family. I live in Middlebury with my husband Andrew, our son Martin, and our dog Fen.

Please send me an email or stop by during office hours if you would like to find out more about the classes I teach or if you are interested in working on a research project.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

FYSE 1524 - Nat History Across Disciplines      

Dirt Across Disciplines-Finding our Place
What can birds tell us about borders? Deer about politics? Earthworms about epistemology? In this class, we will use elements from the non-human world to explore a set of human conversations across academic traditions. We will take natural history seriously as science and metaphor, learning tree identification while discussing trees as tools in climate science and poetry, for example. We will also practice web-building, exploring conventions for communicating from a variety of disciplinary perspectives—from natural science to humanities, from scholarly questions to personal quests for meaning. Be ready to venture outside. May include 2-3 fieldtrips Friday afternoons or weekends. 3 hrs. sem. CW PHL SCI

Fall 2018

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GEOG 0208 - Land and Livelihoods      

Land and Livelihoods - From Local to Global
How do flows of money, people, materials, and ideas connect local livelihoods to distant sites and global processes? How do geographers study patterns of poverty and inequality at different scales? How do we define human development and wellbeing, how do we determine who participates, and why does it matter? In this course we will draw from perspectives in fields ranging from development geography and political ecology to post-colonial studies to examine livelihood dynamics in the Global South. We will use texts, interviews, writing assignments, problem sets, and mapping exercises to explore relationships between economy, identity, and place in an increasingly connected world. 3 hrs. lect. AAL CMP SOC

Spring 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019

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GEOG 0225 - Environ Change Latin America      

Environmental Change in Latin America
This course examines Latin America from a geographical perspective with emphasis on the social, political and ecological underpinnings of change in the region. Building upon the theme of global environmental change in the context of human-environment geography, we will explore urgent challenges linked to the agricultural and extractive industries, urban expansion, land grabs, land reform, indigenous rights, and rural and urban poverty. 3 hrs. lect. AAL AMR SOC

Fall 2017, Spring 2019, Spring 2020

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GEOG 0339 - Practicing Human Geography      

Practicing Human Geography
Whether you are planning to do your own research or want to be a more savvy consumer of research produced by others, it is useful to develop an understanding of the process of creating, discovering, and interpreting information about the world. In this course, students will explore quantitative and qualitative methodologies and the ways they can be used in human geography research. Through examples, exercises, and readings, students will learn the types of questions different techniques are designed to answer, how they work, and how to interpret the results. Students will gain hands on experience conducting surveys, generating and interpreting qualitative data, selecting and implementing statistical analyses, and writing research reports, to build competence and critical awareness in the practice and communication of research. (At least one course in geography, AP human geography credit, or instructor approval) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. lab CW DED

Fall 2017, Spring 2019, Spring 2020

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GEOG 0406 - Sem in Human-Environment Geog      

Seminar in Human-Environment Geography: Landscapes in Transition
What will Vermont look like in 100 years? What about the Brazilian Amazon, the Albertine Rift, or your home town? In this seminar, we will explore the ways that processes of change discussed in our thematic Geography classes like urbanization, climate change, gentrification, commoditization, 'globalization', and more may interact and play out in the future. We will discuss studies of historic and ongoing landscape transitions and conduct our own studies of student-selected places, focusing both on the changes most likely to occur given existing trajectories, and attempting to imagine and articulate what changes would be desirable. (Open to senior majors only; others by waiver) 3 hrs. sem. SOC

Spring 2017, Fall 2019

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GEOG 0500 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
A one-credit intensive research project developed under the direction of a faculty member. Junior majors only. (Approval Required)

Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021

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GEOG 0700 - Senior Research      

Senior Research
A one-credit intensive research project developed under the direction of a faculty member. Senior majors only. (Approval Required)

Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021

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GEOG 0701 - Senior Thesis      

Senior Thesis
Students with a departmental GPA of 3.3 or higher are eligible to complete a two-credit senior thesis. In order to complete a senior thesis, students must have a proposal approved by a primary thesis advisor and a secondary departmental reader prior to registering for the first 0701 credit. Upon completion of the thesis, thesis students will present their work in a public seminar and defend the thesis in front of the departmental faculty. Thesis presentations and defenses will typically take place during the final week of classes or the examination period. Upon completion of the presentation and defense, the primary advisor and secondary departmental reader will be responsible for evaluating and grading the thesis. It is strongly encouraged that students considering a thesis discuss their ideas with an advisor during the semester prior to registering for formal thesis credits. (Approval only)

Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021

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Department of Geography

McCardell Bicentennial Hall
287 Bicentennial Way
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753