Increasing the Retention of Underrepresented Students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)
Pre-Major in Astronomy Program, Staff Member, Curriculum Developer, Academic Mentor
The Pre-Major in Astronomy Program (Pre-MAP) is a research and mentoring program offered by the University of Washington Astronomy Department for first year college students who are underrepresented in STEM fields. Eligible students enroll in the Pre-MAP seminar to learn astronomical research techniques that they apply to research projects, conducted in small groups. Students also receive one-on-one mentoring and peer support for the duration of the academic year and beyond.
Created position to mentor students in a variety of academic skills, including test taking, active learning, effective study techniques, and time management.
Advised students, weekly to quarterly, as individuals or in groups, depending on students’ needs throughout their first two years at the University of Washington.
Introduced students to concepts of metacognition and Bloom's Taxonomy.
Created 12-week curriculum introducing students to astronomy research, including computer programming, reading and writing about science, and presenting research.
Co-created research mentor guide and Pre-MAP overview documents aiding other departments in creating their own version of Pre-MAP.
Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation STEM bridge panel and advisory board member (2012)
Becoming a Science Ambassador
Co-founder, Engage: The Science Speaker Series and Seminar, January 2009 – 2013
Engage: The Science Speaker Series and Seminar is a two-part program to increase the quality of science communicators emerging from the University of Washington. The first part assists graduate students in developing their science communication skills with the public, and the second provides opportunities for them to present their research to the public.
Co-created seminar and lesson plans for graduate students to distill their research into public talks. Lessons included: Art of storytelling, storyboarding, improvisation, use of jargon and analogy, creation of sound bytes and elevator talks.
Co-organized a public speaker series as a platform for seminar students to practice their presentation skills.
Town Hall Seattle now hosts the speaker series "UW Science Now," often pairing University of Washington students with nationally recognized experts. Since, University of Washington College of the Environment has accepted the seminar as a permanent course.
HST E/PO grant 19-002 to design and build a mobile planetarium to engage underfunded Seattle high schools in HST science, create curriculum following WA state standards, and award free bus rentals to visit the UW planetarium.
Download WWT Curriculum co-written with Paul Teske (zip archive of Word and Excel documents):
Coordinated free weekly school visits to the University of Washington planetarium.
Trained volunteers to use the planetarium and design a presentation.
Opened the University of Washington planetarium for the first time to public audiences by developing a graduate student programming series and writing PHP scripts to build a website for automatic online ticketing. Thousands of tickets were requested per show, and as result of this 3-month outreach initiative, University of Washington Astronomy’s new planetarium email list had over 200 subscriptions.