Ocean scientist Christina Ravelo receives Outstanding Faculty Award

Christina Ravelo
Christina Ravelo

Christina Ravelo, professor of ocean sciences at UC Santa Cruz, has received the 2013-14 Outstanding Faculty Award from the Division of Physical and Biological Sciences. The annual award is the division's highest honor for faculty achievement, recognizing combined excellence in research, teaching, and service.

Ravelo studies climate change over Earth's history and how shifts in climate and ocean dynamics are linked, using sediment cores drilled from the ocean floor to find evidence of past climates and ocean conditions.

"The impact of her work has been remarkably broad, influencing not only those in her field, but also scientists focused on modern and future climates and on the potential impacts of climate change," wrote Paul Koch, dean of physical and biological sciences, in a letter announcing the award. "Her international reputation is one of the reasons that UCSC is recognized as a leader in paleoclimatology, paleoceanography, and paleobiology."

Koch noted that Ravelo has an extraordinary record of excellent, high-impact service at all levels, both at UC Santa Cruz and in national and international organizations. At UCSC she has served as director of the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics and as chair of the Committee on Academic Personnel, and she was a member of the Women in Science task force.

Ravelo has served the national and international scientific community in many ways, organizing national meetings and serving on steering committees and workshops. She has played a leadership role in the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP, formerly the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program), an international research program to study the history and dynamics of the Earth. Ravelo served as co-chief scientist of an IODP expedition to the Bering Sea in 2009.

A committed and excellent instructor, Ravelo has developed new classes and teaches both undergraduate and graduate level courses. In addition to classroom teaching, she has provided an undergraduate research experience for a large number of students. She is a dedicated mentor of graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and undergraduate students.

"In summary," Koch wrote, "Professor Ravelo has an outstanding record in research, teaching and exceptional service to the campus and the broader scientific community. The Outstanding Faculty Award from the Division of Physical and Biological Sciences is richly deserved campus recognition for her exemplary record."

A fellow of the American Geophysical Union, Ravelo earned her Ph.D. in geological sciences at Columbia University and a B.S. in geology and B.A. in anthropology at Stanford University. She joined the UC Santa Cruz faculty in 1991.