About Us

Christopher Uhl

I began my career at Penn State University as an Environmental Scientist, conducting research in the rainforests South America, while also spearheading a program to green Penn State by championing sustainability practices. As a Penn State teacher I created a path-breaking course known as Awaken 101 that has enrolled more than fifteen thousand students since its inception.

My passion for teaching motivated me to write i-Teaching as if Life Matters: The Promise of a New Education Culture (with my partner, Dana L. Stuchul); ii-Developing Ecological Consciousness: Becoming Fully Human (with my colleague, Jennifer L. Anderson); and iii-Awaken 101: Discovering Meaning and Purpose in Uncertain Times (with Melissa N. DiJulio).

Melissa DiJulio

I am an eco-psychologist, storyteller, and writer, trying to live my way into the answers to questions like, “How can humans fit, harmoniously, into the larger tapestry of the biosphere?” and “What is the role of stories in navigating these uncertain times?”

Jon Mercuri

I am a creative director and visual designer with an affinity for aesthetics deeply rooted in the inherent beauty of nature. I was heavily involved in Awaken101 during my time at Penn State where I served as a TA & Course Coordinator, designing lecture keynotes and the course journal. I am now proud to translate these important concepts into an interactive web experience almost a decade later.

Ashley Jenkins

I'm a passionately curious digital marketer and entrepreneur whose aim is to bring Awaken 101 to life on social media. Rooted in exploration, the Awaken 101 social media community shares stories, questions, and exercises to support finding meaning and purpose in uncertain times.

Jennifer Anderson

I am a Program Director at Penn State University’s Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center and the present-day teacher of Awaken 101 at Penn State. I find great joy in being a mom, an artist, a lover of Earth and a curious lifelong learner.