Victoria Petryshyn is a seasoned geobiologist who delves into the intricate interactions between the Earth and its living organisms. Her focus lies in unraveling the climate and environmental conditions during Earth’s pivotal epochs by investigating shifts in carbon dioxide, oxygen levels, and temperatures during periods of significant biological changes such as mass extinctions, glaciations, and evolutionary radiations. Victoria also explores the indelible marks left behind in rocks by life forms and extends her expertise to aid NASA in the quest for extraterrestrial life on Mars. Her notable tenure as Chair of the Geological Society of America’s Geomicrobiology Division exemplifies her commitment to energy sustainability education. Through her teaching, she navigates the global energy landscape, guiding students through the nuances of fuel sources, power plant design, and energy distribution, as well as exploring the evolution of climate change and illuminating its impacts today and through Earth’s history.
Victoria completed her undergraduate degree in earth sciences and earned a PhD in geology from the University of Southern California. She then held a postdoctoral research position in isotope geochemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles, followed by a research fellowship at the European Institute of Marine Science in France. Victoria is an associate professor of environmental studies for USC Dornsife and is an affiliated faculty member of the USC Wrigley Institute for Environment and Sustainability where she also serves as the Faculty Coordinator for the Master of Sustainability Management program.