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About Carlie Pietsch

I am a paleontologist with a focus on marine communities associated with mass extinction and extreme climate events in geologic history. I am particularly interested in the disconnect of recovery pace and process between local and global scales following mass extinction events. My research on extreme climate events serves as both a proxy for anthropogenic climate change and as a window into the impact of climate on evolutionary trajectories. I work extensively in the field to document sedimentological changes and collect fossil samples. I use museum collections and fossil databases as well as laboratory tools including microfacies, stable isotope geochemistry, and sclerochronology to study these events. When I am not studying extinction you can also find me swimming, biking, and running triathlons or sampling the best ice cream that the greater San Jose area has to offer.


August 2017 - Present Assistant Professor, San Jose State University Geology

Curriculum Vitae



2012 Kenneth E. and Annie Caster Student Research Grant
Paleontological Society
2012 Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM) Student Research Grant
Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM)
2011 Raymond C. Moore Memorial Grant
American Association of Petroleum Geologists
2011 Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Fund Grant
American Museum of Natural History
2010 Geological Society of America Grant in Honor of Gretchen L. Blechschmidt
Geological Society of America
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Professional Service and Affiliations

2016 - 2016 Symposium Coordinator and Master of Ceremonies, Paleontological Research Institution
2015 - 2015 Session Convener, Geological Society of America
2012 - 2013 Graduate Student Representative, University of Southern California
2011 - 2011 Symposium Coordinator, University of Southern California
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Honors and Awards

  • The Elizabeth and Jerol Sonosky Fellowship for Earth and Ocean Sciences
  • Keck Marine Sciences Fellowship
  • International Geological Correlation Program IGCP-572 International Travel Award
  • Provost Travel Award, University of Southern California
  • Provost Fellowship, University of Southern California


  • Earth History
  • Paleontology and Evolution in Deep Time
  • The Vertebrates; Structure, Function, and Evolution
  • Crises of a Planet
  • Ridge Basin California Field Trip
  • San Andreas Fault Field Trip
  • Big Bear California Field Trip


August 2015 PhD, University of Southern California ‐ Geological Sciences
May 2009 BA, Cornell University ‐ Biological Sciences

Contact Information

Carlie Pietsch, PhD
Assistant Professor, Geology Department
San José State University
408 924-5279 

Publications (12)

Dissertation (1)