Newsmaker: Matthew Opdyke
Noteworthy: Opdyke, along with a Point Park University graduate student, was awarded a grant from the University of Pittsburgh's Pymatuning Laboratory of Ecology to study the species diversity and distribution of lichens at Pymatuning State Park this summer.
Family: wife, Heidi; and son, Benjamin, 10 months
Occupation: associate professor of environmental science at Point Park University
Background: Opdyke worked at the University of Georgia's Savannah River Ecology Laboratory to help develop wetlands to remove metals from coal ash waste at the Savannah River site in Aiken, S.C., from 2000-02. From 2005-07, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Michigan State University. Opdyke became a Point Park faculty member in 2007. He is a member of the Ecological Society of America and the Botanical Society of America.
Education: Bachelor's degree in biology from Mansfield University in 1998; master's of science in environmental science from Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind., in 2000; and doctorate with a concentration in environmental science from the University of Illinois in 2005.
Quote: The most rewarding part of his job “is working with the students. So I really enjoy a chance to get out into the field and just help students learn about the natural environment,” he said.