Peter Levi

Associate Director—Inland Lakes, Mary Griggs Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation

Peter Levi
Office:222 Larson-Juhl Center for Science and the Environment
Email:Send a message...


Earned and Honorary Degrees

BA, Lawrence University
PhD, University of Notre Dame


I’m a freshwater ecosystem ecologist passionate about teaching, field and laboratory research, and science communication and outreach.

My research investigates how changes to lakes, streams, and reservoirs have cascading impacts on other processes within these ecosystems—whether those changes are natural (e.g., seasonal) or anthropogenic (e.g., land-use change). I have had the fortune of working on and in water from the Laurentian Great Lakes to Denmark and salmon-filled streams of Alaska to wetlands with crocodiles in Ghana.

Between earning my undergraduate degree and attending graduate school, I spent three years as an environmental educator, working at outdoor schools from Maine to southern California to the Florida Keys.

Prior to joining the Burke Center at Northland, I was an Associate Professor of Environmental Science & Sustainability at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.

Why Northland?

The people—colleagues dedicated and passionate about providing a high-quality liberal arts education and the hard-working, inquisitive students we have the opportunity to serve as they grow as scientists and citizens.

The place—the north woods of Wisconsin along the shores of the world’s largest freshwater lake (by surface area).

The position—working with students, colleagues, and area partners to best understand the ecology of the lakes, streams, wetlands, and groundwater of an incredibly water-rich region.

Student Involvement

I seek to involve students in all facets of the scientific process—from developing novel research questions to writing and reviewing proposals and from conducting field and laboratory-based research to disseminating the results of our studies. My goal is to develop students as critical thinkers and empower them as scientists as they launch into productive careers beyond Northland.


Observing the wonders around us through my children’s eyes. Pausing often to appreciate living on the shores of the greatest Great Lake. Sharing good times with good people.