A Science Teacher is Born

Tyler Pfaltzgraff '19

“I plan to teach science in either middle school or high school. I particularly love introducing middle school kids to science.”

– Tyler Pfaltzgraff ’19

Hometown: Waukee, Iowa

Major: Biology

Minors: Chemistry and Secondary Education

Campus Activities: Supplemental Instructor for Diversity of Life

Study Abroad Experiences: 17-day course in Tropical Ecology in Costa Rica and Belize during winter break. “We learned firsthand what a tropical ecosystem is like by doing everything from snorkeling in coral reefs to hiking in rainforests,” Pfaltzgraff says.

Student/Faculty Research Subject: The Impact of Drought on Newly Planted Prairie with Professor of Biology Russ Benedict.

“We spent a summer studying the effect of drought on prairie plants. We knew that established prairies are quite drought-tolerant, but we’re also encouraging people to plant new prairies and we didn’t know how they’d fare. It’s been eye-opening. We learned just how important high plant diversity is in a prairie and gained a lot of knowledge about nature in general.”

Scholarships:Cornerstone Scholarship, Central Fund scholarship, Ver Steeg Scholarship
Career Goal
: Science Teacher

Tyler Pfaltzgraff ’19 started his college career as a Central football player.

I came here to play football but I ended up having hip surgery and decided I couldn’t any longer,” says Pfaltzgraff, who focused his energy on his newest interest: biology.

“I really love it here, and I have developed an interest in biology. Now I have more time to pursue that,” he says.

His favorite class? “Anything Professor Benedict teaches. He knows how to answer all your questions. He’s very helpful. Most of all, he’s incredible at field biology, which I love,” Pfaltzgraff says.

Pfaltzgraff knows where he’s headed. “I plan to teach science in either middle school or high school. I particularly love introducing middle school kids to science,” he says.

In addition to his studies and extra-curricular biological pursuits, Pfaltzgraff makes time to serve the surrounding Central College community.

“I take special needs kids bowling with the Christian Opportunity Center as part of service learning at Central,” Pfaltzgraff says.


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