Since 2005, Dr. Bathala has taught Ecology and Environmental Sciences at Universities in the Philadelphia region, including the University of Pennsylvania and Rosemont College. Her research has brought her across the world, studying everything from marine mammals in Greece to rainforests in Central America. An ecologist by training, she is interested in the monitoring of species in both marine and terrestrial ecosystems, particularly for education and curricular development.
During her graduate studies at Duke University, Dr. Bathala was involved with the Organization for Tropical Studies conducting conservation biology research in Costa Rica. This involved the study of land-use change due to deforestation. Additionally, she spent a summer at the Duke University Marine Lab studying oceanography and marine ecosystems. Her doctoral work examined the role of carbon as part of the National Science Foundation Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) network at various biomes throughout North America.
Dr. Bathala has been involved in multiple post-doctoral National Science Foundation (NSF) Chautauqua Field Course programs for University professors. These have included the study of biodiversity, geology and marine communities in Belize, Hawaii and the Galapagos Islands. In 2009 she participated in a scientific research expedition monitoring a population of bottlenose dolphin in the Ionian Sea in western Greece.
Dr. Bathala continues to focus her efforts on increasing awareness of environmental issues and making science accessible and enjoyable to others. Her current endeavors involve the development of children’s books on conservation and species protection. Her 2017 publication Moonlight Crab Count won the Children’s Book Council and Science Teachers Association, Outstanding Science Trade Book for 2018.
In addition to her faculty accomplishments, Dr. Bathala is an avid gardener and certified scuba diver. She lives in South Jersey where she is a member of the Haddonfield Garden Club and Pennsylvania Horticultural Society. She spends her summer at the shore in Stone Harbor, N.J. where she is active in local conservation efforts of horseshoe crabs and other coastal species.
Dr. Bathala serves on the Board of the Clean Air Council in Philadelphia. Additionally, Dr. Bathala remains involved with Duke University, where she serves on the Board of the Philadelphia Regional Alumni Association. She also acts as a mentor for students in the Duke University Nicholas School of the Environment professional Master’s program.