Dr. Timothy L. Hawthorne is a 2022-2023 National Geographic Explorer and a tenured, associate professor of geographic information systems (GIS) at University of Central Florida. He is a public scholar broadly trained in human geography with expertise in community-based scholarship and citizen science. In 2015, he founded an internationally-recognized research group called Citizen Science GIS. The group’s goal is to connect scientists and society through the use of geospatial technologies to make science more accessible and responsive to community concerns. Along with UCF support and that of several public partners and Lynx, a local bus company, the team recently built the nation’s first GeoBus™, a mobile STEAM research and education lab on a repurposed 40-foot city bus powered by the sun that provides geospatial technology learning experiences to K-12 youth and teachers in Florida.
Elise Lorenzo is a PhD student in the UCF Department of Sociology and College of Sciences. Elise is the Education and Outreach Coordinator for GeoBus. She has worked with youth scientists over the past 5 years at UCF in education and outreach efforts.