Associate Professor, Environmental Science
- Bachelor of Science, Biology-Environmental Science, Mansfield University
- Master of Science, Environmental Science, Indiana University at Bloomington, Ind.
- Doctor of Philosophy, Aquatic Biogeochemistry, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Biological Evolution
- General Chemistry
- Introduction to Natural Sciences II
- Politics and the Environment
Matthew Opdyke, Ph.D., is an associate professor of environmental science at Point Park University. Opdyke earned his Ph.D. at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign studying the connection between stream geomorphology and nitrogen cycling in steams impacted by agriculture. He then pursued a postdoctoral research position at Michigan State University in East Lansing where his research focused on novel, stable isotope techniques to differentiate among sources of nitrous oxide in soils. As a professor at Point Park, Opdyke received external research grants to fund his research with students and send them to international conferences.
Opdyke's research projects include (1) assessing watershed health in preparation for a Coldwater Conservation Plan for Fishing Creek watershed (Columbia and Sullivan Counties, Pa.); (2) studying the application of lichens as indicators of habitat alteration and air quality; and (30) monitoring long-term changes in wetland plants following the rehabilitation of a floodplain wetland at Windfield Pines in Bridgeville, Pa.
- "M.R. Cladistics: A Tool for Teaching about Evolutionary Relationships," Green Teacher, 95:31-35, 2012.
- "Wingfield Pines Wetland Plant Monitoring Report 2008-2012," Final Grant Report, Allegheny Land Trust, Sewickley, Pa., 2012.
- "A study of epiphytic lichen communities in urban and rural environments in southwestern Pennsylvania," (with B.E. Dolney, L. Frost, and J.D. Roy) Journal of Pennsylvania Academy of Science, 85:151-158, 2011.
- "Fishing Creek Watershed Coldwater Conservation Plan 2009-2011," Final Grant Report, Coldwater Heritage Partnership, Harrisburg, Pa. 2011.
- "Coldwater conservation plan for Fishing Creek," (with R.S. Opdyke), Columbia County, Pa., Keystone Coldwater Conference, 2012.
- "Monitoring wetland plant diversity and growth at Wingfield Pines," Allegheny Land Trust Open Forum Meeting, 2012.
- "Distribution and diversity of lichen communities influenced by urbanization in southwestern Pennsylvania," Botanical Society of America, 2012.
- "Gigapan Technology: A web-based platform for ecological research and outreach" and "Dendrochronology as an assessment tool of tree growth in wetland restoration projects," Ecological Society of America Meeting, 2011 and 2009.
- "Results of developing a Coldwater Conservation Plan in Fishing Creek watershed in Columbia and Sullivan Counties, Pa.," Fishing Creek Sportsman Association special meeting, July 2011.
- "What are Lichens and What Do They Say About Air Quality in Our Region," Café Scientifique-Pittsburgh, May 2011.
- "What Fluffy Dust, Candle Flame and Other Lichens Tell us About the Air," interviewed by The Allegheny Front, Sept. 2010.
- Lichens as indicators of anthropogenic disturbances
- Aquatic ecology and the relationship between fluvial geomorphology, water quality and biological diversity
- Wetland ecology and restoration
In the News
- "Lichens Take a Likin' to Upper St. Clair Trees," Upper St. Clair Patch, July 23, 2013.
- "The Next Page: The Secret World of Lichen," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 30, 2012.
- "The Power of Cladistics," Green Teacher magazine, Spring 2012 issue.
Point Park Features
- "Recent Biological Sciences Grad Discusses Her Research on Tree Cores," Point Park University website, May 20, 2013.
- "Science Majors Participate in Tree Planting Event on Sycamore Island," Point Park University website, May 6, 2013.
- "Botany Shadowing Assignment Connects Students to Environmental Experts," Point Park University website, Nov. 7, 2012.
- "Green Teacher Magazine Publishes Article by Professor of Environmental Science," May 25, 2012.
- "Professor Opdyke to Discuss His Research on the Lichen Community," Point Park University website, April 15, 2011.
- "Prof. Opdyke, Students Research Lichen as Indicator of Air Quality," Point Park University website, May 28, 2010.