Erin Seekamp, Ph.D.
Tourism Extension Specialist
Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Mgmt.
Box 8004, 3028C Biltmore Hall
Raleigh, NC 27695-8004
North Carolina State University
Erin hails from North Haven, Connecticut and received a Bachelor’s of Science degree (May 1998) from James Madison University (Harrisonburg, Virginia) in Cultural Anthropology, with a minor in Environmental Studies, while working for the George Washington National Forest. After working for North Cascades National Park (Marblemount, Washington), Erin returned to Virginia to pursue a Master’s of Science in Forestry, with a focus on Resource Recreation Management, at Virginia Tech (December 2000). Her Master’s thesis focused on the Jefferson National Forest planning processes, examining stakeholder understanding of environmental quality, which helped foster values-based deliberative planning processes. In August 2006, she received a Doctorate of Philosophy in Natural Resources, specializing in Conservation Social Sciences, from the University of Idaho. Her doctoral work examined the influences of scientific information and small group deliberations on stakeholders’ management preferences during public involvement meetings regarding of a highly visited wilderness area.
In July of 2007 Erin joined the Department of Forestry at Southern Illinois University as an Assistant Professor where she taught a variety of courses for the Parks and Forest Recreation Management specialization within the Department. Her research focuses on building capacity for effective natural resource management to collectively construct and maintain vibrant and resilient socio-ecological communities. Erin hopes to build a research and extension program on sustainable tourism planning, including promoting green tourism, establishing tourism partnership networks, enhancing rural tourism diversification, and envisioning alternative tourism developments scenarios to best protect heritage values, biophysical conditions and social meanings.