Karen Thornton is pursuing a Master of Science degree in Agricultural Safety and Health, and is currently writing her thesis. She has a Bachelor of Science in Animal and Dairy Science from Iowa State University, and Master of Science in Food Science from the University of Georgia. Karen comes from a beef and hay farming background, and still lives and farms east of Cedar Rapids, IA. She had a long and rewarding career in the food industry, where her work focused on food ingredients, primarily corn milling products. She chose the Agricultural Safety and Health graduate program at the University of Iowa because she "wants to work towards a safer, healthier life for rural residents". Aside from graduate coursework, Karen works for the Linn County Health Department as an Environmental Health Specialist, where she monitors, inspects, and helps local residents and companies comply with clean air, clean water, and safe food procedures. Karen's interests include injury prevention for young and elderly agricultural workers, interventions that will help improve Iowa water quality, and unintended antibiotic exposures in livestock workers. When she obtains her degree, Karen hopes to teach rural safety and health courses and/or seminars at a local community college.
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Diane Rohlman