ISTEM Resource Network
Jennifer Hicks is a K-12 science program manager, at the I-STEM Resource Network, Purdue University. Prior to this position, Dr. Hicks served as science curriculum specialist in the Office of Curriculum and Instruction for the Indiana Department of Education. Dr. Hicks is responsible for the managing the development of science standards, supporting curriculum resources for science, and promoting innovation in science teaching throughout Indiana. She is a lead team member for the Indiana Science Initiative, a K-8 systemic science initiative that has engaged 2,000 teachers and 125 schools in Indiana in research-developed science curriculum and professional development. Prior to joining the Department, Jenny was a high school teacher in California and received a Life Sciences Single Subject Credential from San Francisco State University. She also holds a Professional Educator’s License in the State of Indiana in Chemistry and Life Sciences. She has taught biology, chemistry, marine biology and earth sciences at the high school level. Prior to teaching high school, she was an NIH postdoctoral fellow in the Biology Department at Washington University in St. Louis, where she performed research on proteins in fruit flies. She has also taught science coursework at the college and graduate level at Webster University in St. Louis and at Indiana University in Bloomington. She received a B.S. in Biology and a Ph.D. in Visual Sciences from Indiana University.
Ohio STEM Learning Networ
Mr. Stephen Krak is a Program Manager and twenty-year veteran of Battelle, an international science and technology enterprise that explores emerging areas of science, develops and commercializes technology, and manages laboratories for customers. Steve’s career at Battelle began with an internship while completing his Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering at The Ohio State University. His area of specialty is integrated optical circuits, including fiber optics, for sensing and communication applications. Throughout most of his career, Steve worked on and managed projects, Cleanroom laboratories, and the Optics and Microfabrication groups at Battelle. He served on the core business development team that opened Battelle offices in Japan and South Korea. Steve is a long-time volunteer in the classroom and for over three years has served as the Program Manager of the Ohio STEM Learning Network (OSLN), a public/private collaborate that endeavors to change the relationship between economic development, education and personal prosperity in Ohio. For more information, please visit www.olsn.org . In addition to Program Management for the OSLN, Steve managed the proposal process for Ohio’s winning Race to the Top submission, is Relationship Manager to New York in Battelle’s new Multi-state STEM Network program, and is assisting an Ohio team pursuing Community College Learn & Earn grant opportunities designed to prepare post-secondary students for STEM careers.
Denver School of Science and Technology (DSST)
Bill Kurtz is CEO of DSST Public Schools. DSST is a charter school management organization that is opening ten secondary schools on five campuses in Denver. Bill was the Founding Head of School of the Denver School of Science and Technology (DSST), the flagship school of DSST Public Schools. The school has become an exemplar for high school reform and a leader in STEM education nationwide. The combination of the school's highly significant year-to-year student learning growth, extraordinarily diverse student population, innovative school culture, and 100% college acceptance rate for its graduates has made DSST a change agent for local public schools and a destination for school reformers from all over the country. Bill was recognized as the 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year by the New Schools Venture Fund at their national summit in Washington D.C. Bill was named one of 25 champions of public education in Denver over the last 25 years in 2008 by the Public Education Business Coalition. He currently serves on the Advisory Council of the University of Southern California’s Rossier School of Education MAT program. Prior to joining DSST, Bill served as Principal of Link Community School, an independent middle school located in Newark, New Jersey. Before his career in education, he worked as an investment banker at JP Chase in New York City. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Princeton University with a B.A. and earned an M.A. from Columbia University’s Teachers College in educational administration and leadership.
Peabody College of Vanderbilt University
Richard Lehrer is the Frank W. Mayborn Professor of Education at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College. Previously, he worked at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he was associate director of the National Center for Improving Student Learning and Achievement in Mathematics and Science. He collaborates with teachers to craft, implement, and assess modeling approaches to mathematics and science education in the elementary and middle school grades. He has also formulated innovative geometry instruction for primary- and elementary-grade students that is guided by longitudinal study of student thinking about space. He is a former high school science teacher and has pioneered classroom research that investigates cognitive technologies as tools for thought in mathematics and science. He has served as a member of the National Research Council’s Committee on the Foundations of Assessment, the National Research Council Committee on Systems of Statewide Science Assessment and the NAE/NRC Committee on Engineering in K-12 Education. He has a Ph.D. in educational psychology and statistics from the University of New York, Albany.
Stevens Institute of Technology
Beth McGrath is Chief of Staff in the Office of the President at Stevens Institute of Technology. Previously she was Executive Director of the Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education (CIESE) and Senior Research Associate in the Schools of Engineering & Science and Systems & Enterprises at Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ. Since 2005, under McGrath’s leadership, CIESE was honored with the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics, Science, and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM) award and has garnered more than $26 million in STEM education and research projects sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the US Department of Defense, the NJ Department of Education, and the US Department of Education, mainly in the areas of K-12 engineering and science education, 21st century skills, and STEM scale-up and capacity building in K-12 and higher education. McGrath played a key role in several national Internet-in-K-12 science education curriculum development and teacher training initiatives that impacted more than 35,000 teachers in 23 states and 8 countries. Her research interests include: organizational development and capacity-building in K-12 education, diffusion of technology innovations in K-12, and engineering’s role in 21st century skill development. McGrath serves on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Technology and Engineering Literacy (TEL) Assessment Standing Committee, and several advisory boards of science and engineering education development projects. She holds a B.S. degree in Mass Communications from Virginia Commonwealth University and a M.Ed. from the University of Maryland.
Barbara M. Means
Barbara Means is Co-Director of the Center for Technology in Learning at SRI International. Her research focuses on ways in which technology can support students' learning of advanced skills and the revitalization of classrooms and schools. She is regarded as a leader in defining issues and approaches for evaluating the implementation and efficacy of technology-supported educational innovations. Currently, she is involved in research on STEM-focused secondary schools that target under-served populations and do not use selective admissions processes. In addition, she is directing SRI's evaluation of the first cohort of grants awarded under the Next Generation Learning Challenges initiative for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Her published works include the edited volumes Evaluating Educational Technology, Technology and Education Reform, and Teaching Advanced Skills to At-Risk Students as well as the jointly authored volumes Using Technology Evaluation to Advance Student Learning, The Connected School, and Comparative Studies of How People Think. A Fellow of the Arerican Educational Research Association, Dr. Means serves on the boards of the Oracle Education Foundation and CADRE, the Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (the resource network for the National Science Foundation’s DRK-12 program). Previously, she has served as a member of the NRC/BOSE Committee on Highly Successful Schools or Programs for K-12 STEM Education, the NRC Board on Testing and Assessment, and the NRC committee that produced the report, How People Learn. Dr. Means earned her bachelor's degree in psychology from Stanford University and her Ph.D. in educational psychology at the University of California, Berkeley.
Oceanside School District, New York
Donna Migdol is a teacher in Oceanside Schools’ (New York) elementary gifted and talented program and is a former grades K-6 mathemtics lead teacher for Oceanside Schools. Ms. Migdol has presented her classroom engineering design work and math lessons to the Peer Review Panel in Albany, as well as to the National Science Foundation in Washington D.C. As a third grade teacher, Donna’s classroom was filmed by WNET Teacher Net, where engineering design coupled with inquiry based mathematics and science instruction was highlighted. Donna co-developed and facilitated the Math, Science, and Technology Summer Institute at Hofstra University. She has served as an adjunct professor at Hofstra University, teaching graduate elementary mathematics, science and technology courses. She has professionally developed teachers at the SUNY OLD Westbury Mathematics Problem Solving Institute as well as served as an elementary math consultant for many school districts on Long Island. Donna has published several articles and her work as a teacher has been cited in Alfie Kohn’s book, The Schools Our Children Deserve. Donna’s work with students was also cited in chapter one of “Exemplary Science in Grades 5-8: Standards-Based Success Stories, edited by Robet E. Yager. Her students are passionately engaged in STEM learning. She is also presently partnered with Hofstra University’s Center for Technological Literacy as a curriculum writer for two grant-funded projects geared to grades 6-8.
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Mitchell J. Nathan is a professor of learning sciences in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prof. Nathan received his Ph.D. in experimental (cognitive) psychology. He also holds a B.S. in electrical and computer engineering, mathematics and history. He has worked in research and development in artificial intelligence, computer vision and robotic mobility, including: design and development of autonomous robotic arms and vehicles; the development of expert systems and knowledge engineering interview techniques; and the representation of perceptual and real-world knowledge to support inference-making in dynamic environments. Nathan also has worked on computer-based tutoring environments for mathematics education that rely heavily on students' own comprehension processes for self-evaluation and self-directed learning (so-called unintelligent tutoring systems). Prof. Nathan directed the IERI-funded STAAR Project, which studied the transition from arithmetic to algebraic reasoning. He is currently Co-PI for the AWAKEN Project, which documents how people learn and use engineering, and Co-PI for the National Center for Cognition and Mathematics Instruction. He has affiliate appointments in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction, the Department of Psychology, the Wisconsin Center for Education Research, and the Center on Education and Work.
Mark Sanders, Virginia Tech Professor Emeritus of Integrative STEM Education / Technology Teacher Education is most recently known for his two decades of work in Integrative STEM Education. As PI and co-Director of the Technology, Science Mathematics Integration Project (NSF, 1991-1996) he co-authored the TSM Connection Activities (1996, McGraw-Hill) and Engineering & Design Applications (2008, McGraw-Hill). In 2003, he conceptualized Virginia Tech’s Integrative STEM Education graduate program, which he co-founded in 2005. By 2010, this unique graduate program enrolled more than 50 S, T, E, & M teachers / administrators from 10 states, including two dozen PhD candidates and a comparable number of EdS & master’s students. From 1980-2005, he pioneered / disseminated new graphic communication instruction, including electronic publishing (1981), digital multimedia (1983); interactive video (1984); digital video / holography (1992); and Web-based portfolios (1995). His Communication Technology text, the first to address “cross-media publishing” technologies (McGraw-Hill, 1991, 1996) quickly became the most-used text in the field. He was Founding Editor of the internationally recognized Journal of Technology Education (1989-1997) and pioneered free global access to the JTE (1992-present) before the Web was launched. He envisioned, established, and directed Graphic Comm Central (1997-2009), the Web portal and professional network for graphic communication educators. He earned a PhD in Education (U of Maryland, 1980) and began his career as a high school Technology teacher in upstate NY.
Redmond High School
Mike Town is a 2010-2011 Einstein Fellow working on STEM education policy issues for the National Science Board Office. For the past 25 years, Michael has taught numerous integrated high school STEM courses in Redmond, Washington including Advanced Placement Environmental Science and Environmental Engineering and Sustainability Design. Both courses are dual credited and Career and Technical Education (CTE) certified. Mike has work on committees in Washington State to design standards for a state certified CTE course in Environmental Science and Sustainability and an endorsement certification in Environmental and Sustainability Education for pre-service teachers. Mike has written significant environmental curriculum. The most notable is the Cool School Challenge (CSC) which enables students to conduct energy audits and develop action plans to measure and reduce the carbon footprint in schools across the United States. The CSC has won the EPA Clean Air Award, and Mike’s CSC students received the Presidents Environmental Youth Award from President Bush. He also helped develop and design an environmental education center and serves as a board member for the Environmental Education Association of Washington. Mike had won numerous awards including the National Education Association Foundation Green Prize for the United States, Environmental Educator of the Year from the North American Association of Environmental Educators and the Conservation Fund Environmental Educator Award for the United States. Mike earned degrees in Environmental Science and/or Science Education from Huxley College of The Environment, Western Washington University and the University of Washington. Mike will be returning to teaching at Redmond High School in Redmond, Washington in September 2011.