The College of Applied Science and Technology (CAST) at Illinois State University is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year! This series, CAST 50×50, is designed to highlight 50 faculty, staff, students, alumni, and organizations within CAST that make the college special. These notable people will tell you that every day in CAST is a great day to be a Redbird!

Today, we head to the Department of Health Sciences to feature Thomas Bierma for #CAST50!

What is your position within CAST?

I’m professor emeritus of environmental health and hold a current position of research professor of environmental health. My current position allows me to focus on research and the funding of research.

What is a common myth about Health Sciences, and can you provide the fact?

We are not Student Health Services, despite the hundreds of students over the years who have tried to make appointments with us.

What was your first car, and how long did it last you?

1970 VW Beetle. I sold it in 1980.

Pandora station that is always playing on your computer?

Latin Mix

What do you enjoy most about your job? What is the most rewarding part about your job?

When I was a professor, I focused on teaching and loved it. What I love now is having the time to focus on research. It’s also been great to be a part of this department since before it was a department. When I was an undergrad at ISU in the 1970s, we were the Center for Allied Health Sciences. I’m so grateful to Dr. Charles Spencer, the first chair of the department, who hired me in 1984 and gave me a chance to teach. Health Sciences has had such great people over the years—Chairs, faculty, staff and students. It’s been a great place to work.

Think you know someone who should be featured? Contact us!