Mark Gleason, Ph.D.

Mark Gleason Headshot

Mark Gleason, Ph.D., Assistant Professor

Office Address: 284C Richard M. DeVos Center - Pew Campus
Phone: (616) 331-8828

Teaching Areas:
HTM 202 - International Tourism
HTM 368 - Geotourism
HTM 402 - Tourism Policy Issues

In addition to instructing at six colleges/universities, Dr. Gleason has professional experience with several Natural Resources Management agencies and environmental education programs. Those positions include being a Ranger with the National Park Service and being the first Director of the Isle Royale Institute. He has worked with environmental educational outdoor adventure programs including being part of over thirty Outward Bound and NOLS courses. Also he has over ten years working in the Criminal Justice field. His maritime work experiences includes being crew on six tall ships and a number of other ships including the National Park Ship Ranger III.  Dr. Gleason has nearly fifteen years of diverse experience in the operation of underwater robots/ROVs. These experiences are in education, research and industry. His Ph.D. dissertation research demonstrated the usefulness of small ROVs in natural resources education programs including long distance education. The programs and their development during his dissertation research led to positions creating educational programs at several museums and colleges. Those educational efforts resulted in unique underwater experiences for tens of thousands of students and members of the general public. Other professional positions include several years’ operating ROVs in the oil/gas industry in the middle-east. His recent ROV work includes developing partnerships between universities, government agencies, non-profits and industry to explore shipwrecks in the Great Lakes. Those partnerships have used ROVs and side scan sonar to explore approximately seventy Great Lakes shipwrecks. In addition, he is an adjunct faculty with Alpena Community College’s Marine Tech program that provides ROV training for college students. In addition to operating ROVs to the deepest point in the Great lakes, he has also filmed Moose underwater at Isle Royale and Manatee in Florida.

B.S., Grand Valley State University
M.P.A., Western Michigan University
M.S., Michigan State University
Ph.D., Michigan Tech University

Research interests include the use of technology in natural resources education, maritime and natural resources management and the use of robotics to explore underwater archeology sites.  Additional areas include the use of service animals within the tourism industry and historical accuracy at Dark/Death tourism sites.

Active in K-12 and college instruction for underwater robotics.  Presently assisting aquariums like Shedd Aquarium in Chicago with robotics competitions, museums like the Grand Rapids Public Museum with their special education programs, tall ship programs like Bay Sail with assistance on special sails and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with K-12 and college-level education.  Also, provide a number of public programs and presentations on exploring Great Lakes shipwrecks.