Jill Karsten ’77
Program Director, GEO Education and Diversity, National Science Foundation, Directorate for Geosciences

Jill Karsten
Dr. Jill Karsten is the Program Director for Education and Diversity within the Directorate for Geosciences (GEO) at the National Science Foundation.

In this capacity, she oversees several funding programs focused on strengthening geoscience education at all grade levels, developing the future geoscience workforce, and advancing public Earth system science literacy.  She is Co-Chair of the NSF Working Group on Climate Change Education and co-manages the Climate Change Education Partnership (CCEP) program.  She served as Chair of the NSF-wide Improving Undergraduate STEM Education Implementation Team and represents GEO as a member of the Cultivating Cultures for Ethical STEM program working group.  She is also a member of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) Education Interagency Working Group.  For these efforts, she was honored in 2015 with the NSF Director’s Award for Meritorious Service.  Dr. Karsten is a marine geologist by training; she studied mid-ocean ridge volcanism and tectonics in the Northeast and Southeast Pacific Oceans for 12 years as a member of the research faculty at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa.  Prior to joining NSF in 2005, she served as a Program Officer in the Marine Geology & Geophysics program at the Office of Naval Research and as the Education Manager for the American Geophysical Union, a scientific society with nearly 62,000 members worldwide.  She earned her B.A. degree in Geochemistry from Wellesley College (1977) and her M.S. (1980) and Ph.D. (1988) degrees in Geological Oceanography from the University of Washington.