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Frank T. Kuserk

Professor of Biology (1977)
Director, Environmental Studies & Sciences Program


  • B.S., University of Notre Dame
  • Ph.D., University of Delaware

Areas of Research and/or Expertise

Stream ecology and restoration, especially freshwater fish and benthic macroinvertebrate populations; Ecology of soil microbial communities; Evolution


Dr. Kuserk and his students were most recently working with the Wildlands Conservancy assessing the impact that stream restoration efforts have on the fish and macroinvertebrate communities in the streams of the Lehigh River Watershed. In addition, he maintained an active research program at the Palmerton Zinc Superfund site evaluating the effects that heavy metal smelting have had on the forests, wildlife, and soil microbial communities in this impacted area. He also served as a consultant for the Illinois Institute of Technology Research Institute’s environmental impact study on the U.S. Navy’s extra-low frequency radiowave transmitter project and for projects conducted by the Legislative Commission on Minnesota Resources.

He and his students published articles in Microbial Ecology, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, Ecology, Journal of Protozoology, Journal of the Pennsylvania Academy of Science, American Biology Teacher, and The Quarterly Review of Biology and received grants from the National Science Foundation, the Pennsylvania Academy of Science, the Pennsylvania Wild Resources Conservation Fund, and Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society He presented at numerous state, national and international conferences including the IV International Congress of Ecology, the 3rd International Symposium on Microbial Ecology and annual meetings of the Ecological Society of America. He was especially proud of the fact that his students consistently presented their work at scientific meetings such as the National Conference on Undergraduate Research, the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Ecological Society of America, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Science. Several of his students received awards for their research including the American Institute of Biological Sciences National Undergraduate Research Award.

Dr. Kuserk chaired the campus sustainability committee and served as advisor to environmental studies & sciences majors and students majoring in science education. He was active with the University Board’s AP Environmental Science Program and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and served as assistant editor for the Association for Environmental Studies & Sciences newsletter.

Dr. Kuserk passed away in October 2017, while still actively pursuing his research and teaching interests with his students.


  • Husic, D. and F. Kuserk. 2007. Lehigh Gap: A Vibrant Education and Research Center. Wildlife Activist: 59: 3-4.
  • Scholtes, C.E. and F.T. Kuserk. 2006. Isolation and identification of proteolytic bacteria of the northern pitcher plant, Sarracenia purpureaJournal of the Pennsylvania Academy of Science 80(1): 24-27.
  • Vadino, B. and F.T. Kuserk. 2006. Water Quality Monitoring Program: 2001-2005 Summary Report for Saucon Creek. Wildlands Conservancy, Emmaus, PA. 84 pp + appendices.
  • Vadino, B. and F.T. Kuserk, 2005. 2005 Water Quality Monitoring Program Report for Little Lehigh Creek, Wildlands Conservancy, Emmaus, PA. 39 pp + appendices.
  • Vadino, B. and F.T. Kuserk, 2005. 2005 Water Quality Monitoring Program Report for Saucon Creek. Wildlands Conservancy, Emmaus, PA. 42pp + appendices.
  • Kuserk, F.T. 2002. Measuring discharge & materials transport in stream ecosystems. In: McComas, W.F. (ed.), Investigating Ecology in the Laboratory, National Association of Biology Teachers, Reston, VA. 7(4): 16-20.
  • Kuserk, F.T. 1999. Science and Religion: A Synthesis in Progress - A Response. The Hinge
  • Kuserk, F.T., J.J. Gerencher and A.M. Martin. 1994. Revolutions in Science: Making Connections Across the Core Curriculum. In: Kelder, R. (ed.) Interdisciplinary Curricula, General Education, and Liberal Learning: Selected Papers from the Third Annual Conference of the Institute for the Study of Postsecondary Education, The State University of New York at New Paltz, pp. 51-58.
  • Kuserk, F.T. 1989. Measuring discharge & materials transport in stream ecosystems. American Biology Teacher 51(2): 100-102.
  • Kuserk, F.T. 1985. Lewis David von Schweinitz: Pioneer of American Science. Moravian Alumni Quarterly 34(3):2-4.
  • Bott, T.L., L.A. Kaplan and F.T. Kuserk. 1984. Microbial biomass and activity under varying DOC regimes. Microbial Ecology10(4):335-344.
  • Kuserk, F.T., L.A. Kaplan and T.L. Bott. 1984. In situ measures of dissolved organic carbon flux in a rural stream. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 41:964-973.
  • Kuserk, F.T. 1980. The relationship between cellular slime molds and bacteria in forest soil. Ecology 61(6):1474-1485.