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About Us: Our Faculty

Darren Proppe, Assistant Professor, Biology

Darren Proppe616-526-6662
Office: DeVries Hall 207

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  • B.S. in Biology, Texas A & M University in Biology, 1998
  • M.S. in Applied Ecology, Eastern Kentucky University, 2005
  • Ph.D. in Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, 2010

Professional Experience

  • Assistant Professor,  Montreat College, Montreat, North Carolina, 2010 – 2012
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta,  2006 – 2010
  • Avian Biologist, Colorado Division of Wildlife, Fort Collins, Colorado,  2005 – 2006
  • High School Science Educator, Berea College, Berea, Kentucky,  Summer 2005
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond, Kentucky, 2003 – 2005
  • Environmental Science Educator, American Outdoor Schools, Coarsegold, California, 2001 –  2003

Research and Professional Interests

I am interested in how animals respond to novel environments – especially those altered by human development. My research focuses primarily on the vocal responses of songbirds to the increasing levels of anthropogenic (human caused) noise that overlaps their vocal signals. Since these overlapped signals are less detectable, I am investigating mechanisms that species employ to increase the effectiveness of their signals in areas of high noise. I am also investigating the potential that noise exacerbates the loss of some species and homogenation in developed landscapes.

See an interview about my research that was on BBC World News >>
Here is a BBC story as well.

Life Outside of Calvin College

In his spare time, Darren enjoys  spending time outdoors with his wife Sarah, son Elliot (3 years old), and daughter Grace (1 year old).  Darren appreciates hiking, backpacking, road and mountain biking, and bird watching.  An avid birder, Darren keeps a life list of birds that he’s seen, and in past years was a scuba instructor and a wilderness guide. He also completed a half ironman several years ago.

See a partial list of Dr. Proppe's publications