I have two decades of experience in radiation safety, health/medical physics, research in isotope transfer and localization. I have always had a passion for education and discovery and over the course of my professional career have in some form been repeatedly drawn back to education. I enjoy helping students of all ages and backgrounds form connections and gain insight into the world around them. I feel that by bringing my academic background and field experience to the classroom I may spark a desire for inquiry. And in so doing nurture the next generation of scientists on their roads to discovery and fulfilling careers within the fields of science and math.
I don’t have anyone specific teaching/learning experience that jumps out. But when I think back over the course of my academic career I remember moments that impacted my perception. I had a 5th grade teacher that saw I liked to read and was interested in science, she gave me a book “A Wrinkle in Time” which sent me off onto tangents of what if we could travel like they did. I remember my high-school Chemistry and Physics instructors how they always provide one extra “Think about this” question that would send me to the library hunting for answers. These may seem like inconsequential examples of inspiration, but it was these little things that built over time that used my curiosity to motivate me to seek more. One teacher noticed a students interest and strengths and subtly offered a book that sparked an interest, then passed that information on to my next teacher and so on and on. Looking back it was this amalgamation of teacher interest that supported and encouraged my desire to learn.
The Noyce program has meant a great deal to me, because it has afforded me the opportunity to learn from and work with experts in the fields of science, math and education. Being able to access these individuals and learn from their experience (both trials and successes) provides a wealth of knowledge about what to expect, what motivates students, basically, how to help them get more out of the content. But it is also a support system, designed to help you gain the experience and skills will that pave the way for success. Which in turn prepares me to guide and support my future students so they can succeed in their endeavors.