Jim Yoder

Jim Yoder

Office Phone: (540) 432-4410

Cell Phone: (540) 421-9912

Email:

Main Campus, Harrisonburg

Office Location: RT-D 001A


Jim Yoder in the news:

Plant pathologist crowdfunds research to combat the emerald ash borer and work towards saving North American ash trees

Wildlife Federation backs interdisciplinary work – science, digital media, peacebuilding – on stream restoration

EMU administration and students join forces to recycle, compost and otherwise aim for sustainability

EMU sustainability efforts recognized by statewide climate action campaign

EMU partners with Virginia Sierra Club for Earth Day forum, April 22

Professor

Biology Dept

Jim advises the Environmental Sustainability majors and teaches ecology and conservation biology courses. He earned his Ph.D. from the Ohio State University and his primary research interests include conservation biology, landscape ecology, behavioral ecology and GIS (Geographical Information Systems). Past research has focused on population and behavioral responses of species to habitat fragmentation. His dissertation research at The Ohio State University was in collaboration with the Ohio Division of Wildlife and examined the effects of fragmented habitat on the dispersal and population dynamics of ruffed grouse in southeastern Ohio.

In 2006 he began a longterm collaborative study working with Shenandoah National Park research botanist, Wendy Cass. The research is being conducted by 2-3 EMU undergraduates per year (including summers) as well as SNP personnel. The project includes intense on-site field sampling as well as mapping and analysis of exotic plant spread and impact using GIS. The project addresses two specific research questions that focus on the exotic plants invading the Shenandoah National Park: 1) What is the rate of spread of the three most threatening exotic species beginning to invade the Big Meadows Swamp Natural Heritage area and 2) What is the impact of these exotics on the continued viability of the eight rare plant species located within the area? Both of the questions are of intense interest to park biologists and land managers as well as contribute to the broader ecological study of exotic plant invasions of native ecosystems.

Jim also ventured into study abroad education by leading a 6-week cross-cultural trip to New Zealand in the summer of 2010 with his wife Kathy and returning for a semester long trip back to New Zealand in the fall of 2012. The trip focused on sustainability issues related to tourism, natural resource conservation, and agriculture as well as indigenous Maori culture, restorative justice and New Zealand history. He and Kathy will be leading another six-week summer experience to New Zealand in the summer of 2015.

In addition to teaching, Jim is the curator of the D. Ralph Hostetter Museum of Natural History and the faculty resource person and chair of the implementation team for the Peace With Creation Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), a 5 year initiative drawing together EMU students, faculty and staff around the theme of sustainability and how it relates to Anabaptist beliefs concerning creation care, peace and social justice.

Education

B.S., Eastern Mennonite University (1994)
M.S., Ph.D., Ohio State University (2004)

Publications
  • Graber Neufeld, D.S., and Yoder, J. (2011). The Role of Feeding Adaptations in Resource Competition between Invasive and Native Clams. Proceedings of ABLE. Pages 78-87, in Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching, Volume 32 (K. McMahon, Editor). Proceedings of the 32nd Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE), 383 pages.
  • Yoder, J.M, C.A. Yoder, C.A. Devadason, and W. Cass. 2007. The Use of GIS in Determining the Spread and Impact of Invasive Plant Species Within a Wetland Community. Abstract. Virginia Journal of Science 58: xx
  • Yoder J.M. 2006. How the story of Jesus and the life of the church has shaped my interactions with students and my teaching practices. Proceedings of the 2006 Mennonite University Faculty Conference. Mennonite Education Agency.
  • Yoder J. M., D. A. Swanson, E. A. Marschall. 2004. The Cost of Dispersal: Predation as a function of movement in Ruffed grouse. Behavioral Ecology 15: 469-476.
  • Connor, E.F., J. M. Yoder, A. C. Courtney. 2000. Individuals-area relationships: The relationship between animal population density and area. Ecology 81:734-748
  • Connor, E.F., J.M. Yoder, J.A. May. 1999. Density-related predation by Poecile carolinensis on the Leaf-Mining Moth, Cameraria hamadryadella at three spatial scales. Oikos 87:105-112
  • Yoder, J.M., J.L. Dooley, J.F. Zawacki, M.A. Bowers. 1996. Female aggression in Microtus pennsylvanicus: Arena trials in the field. American Midland Naturalist 135: 1-8.
Scholarly Presentations and Abstracts

(past 6 years only)

  • Measurement Of Invasive Plant Cover Changes To Prioritize And Assess Exotic Plant Control Efforts In A Rare Virginia Wetland. Yoder, J.M., Shenk, A., and Cass, W.. Annual Meeting of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Ecological Society of America. Blacksburg, VA. April 2012
  • Let’s Get Serious about Integrating Sustainability into General Education: Strategies for Staff and Faculty. Stewart, M, Yoder, J.M., Lantz-Trissel, J., and Rowe, D. Panel Discussion. Annual Meeting of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Pittsburgh, PA. October 2011.
  • Environmental Sustainability: A QEP for the 21st Century. Yoder, J.M. and Aracena, B., Southern Association of Colleges and Universities Annual Meeting. Louisville, KY. December 2010.
  • Measurement of native and invasive plant cover changes to improve planning and management in a rare Virginia wetland. Harman, C.H., Yoder J.M., Cass, W.B. Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America. Pittsburgh, PA. August 2010.
  • Peace With Creation: A History of Sustainability at Eastern Mennonite University. Yoder. J.M., Peace on Earth: Anabaptism and Ecological Action in Aotearoa (Symposium), Waikanae, New Zealand, May, 2010
  • The Use of GIS in Determining the Spread and Impact of Invasive Plant Species Within a Wetland Community (poster). Yoder J.M, C.A. Yoder, C.A. Devadason, and W. Cass. Annual Meeting of the Virginia Academy of Science, Harrisonburg, VA. May, 2007.
  • Mapping Invasive and Rare Wetland Plant Species to Visualize Competition and Devise a Control Strategy. Cass, W. and J. M. Yoder. Annual Meeting of the George Wright Society, St. Paul MN. April 2007.
  • How the story of Jesus and the life of the church has shaped my interactions with students and my teaching practices. J. M. Yoder. Mennonite University Faculty Conference, Bluffton, OH. August, 2006.
Other Presentations

(past 2 years)

  • “New Zealand”, Eastern Mennonite High School chapel presentation, Yoder, J.M., May 6, 2013
  • “Teaching Strategies Workshop (Peace with Creation)”, Spring Faculty/Staff Workshop, Yoder, J.M. Eastern Mennonite University, May 4, 2012
  • “The Language of Sustainability”, Fall Faculty/Staff Workshop. Yoder, J.M. Eastern Mennonite University, August 21, 2011
  • “Uncovering Sustainability in the Curriculum”, Spring Faculty/Staff Presentation and Workshop. Yoder, J.M. Eastern Mennonite University, May 5, 2011.
Honors, Awards and Grants
  • “Acquisition of Instrumentation to Support Integrated Research and Teaching in Interdisciplinary Environmental Plant Biology” — A National Science Foundation – Major Research Instrumentation grant for $103,130, September, 2008
  • The Spread of Invasive Exotic Plant Species and Their Impact on Rare Plant Populations in Shenandoah National Park, EMU Release Time Grant, 6 semester hours, $500, 2006-07.
  • Quality Service Award, 2006, Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, VA
  • Graduate Teaching Award, 1998, Department of Zoology, Ohio State University, Columbus OH
Professional Memberships
  • Ecological Society of America
  • Society for Conservation Biology
  • Association for Biology Laboratory Education
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • Shenandoah Anabaptist Science Society
Professional Conferences Attended

(past 4 years)

  • Smart and Sustainable Campus Conference, Bethesda, MD. April 2013
  • Annual Meeting of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Ecological Society of America. Blacksburg, VA. April 2012
  • Annual Meeting of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Pittsburgh, PA. October 2011.
  • Sustainability Across the Curriculum Leadership Workshop, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Emory University, Atlanta, GA. January 2011
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, COC Annual Meeting, Louisville, KY December 2010
  • Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America. Pittsburgh, PA. August 2010.
  • Peace on Earth: Anabaptism and Ecological Action in Aotearoa, Waikanae, New Zealand, May, 2010
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges Annual Meeting, Atlanta GA, December 2009
  • Association for Biology Laboratory Education, Annual Conference, University of Delaware, June 2009
New Courses Taught
  • CCSSC 201 Cross-cultural Understanding, Fall 2012
  • CCHIS 306 New Zealand History, Fall 2012
  • CCREL306 Christianity, Indigenous Religion and Restorative Justice in New Zealand, Fall 2012
  • CCENV 203 Environment and Society in New Zealand, Fall 2012
  • CCENV 210 Island Ecology and Conservation, Fall 2012
  • Cross-Cultural Social Science (New Zealand Cross-cultural) Summer 2010
  • Environmental Science and Society in New Zealand Summer 2010
  • Biological Explorations, Spring 2009
  • Green Design, Spring 2008
  • Advanced Ecology and Field Biology (BIOL 451), Fall 2006
EMU Service
  • Curator, D. Ralph Hostetter Museum of Natural History, 2005 – present
  • Writing Committee, 2010 – present
  • QEP Implementation Team Chair, 2009 – present
  • Cross Cultural Committee, 2009 – present
  • Creation Care Council, Executive Committee, 2007 – present
  • Committee on Teacher Education, 2006 – present
  • Campus representative, Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies, 2006-present
  • QEP Planning Committee, 2008 – 2009
  • Admissions Committee, 2007 – 2009
  • Biology Faculty Search Committees, Spring 2006 (chair) & Spring 2007
  • Library Advisory Committee, 2002-2006