Educational Leadership, 2010 cohort
After graduating from Stonehill College in 1976, I began my career as an educator. As a high school biology teacher at the Taunton High School, I quickly began to enjoy the career I had wanted since childhood. Within my first 10 years as an educator, I earned a Master’s degree in marine biology and a CAGS in school administration and assumed the role of Science Coordinator. I served 20 rewarding years as science supervisor at Taunton High, and in 2007, I decided to return to my original role of full time classroom teaching.
As curriculum supervisor in Taunton, I worked with fellow science teachers to re-establish a high school/middle school science fair that has continued to grow over the past 25 years. I have also coordinated several curriculum revisions and promoted scientific inquiry in our program.
I have been involved in science leadership organizations. Early in my career, I helped to form a local association of science leaders, and I became the charter president of this science leaders’ association, the Southeastern Mass. Association of Science Supervisors (SEMASS). This affiliate of the Massachusetts Science Educators Leadership Association continues today as a professional organization for science educators and leaders. I have also served on the Region III Science Fair Committee for several years, promoting science research among middle school and high school students in southeastern Massachusetts.
My return to full time teaching has been very fulfilling. In 2009, I became a semi-finalist for the Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, and a finalist for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. Most recently, I received a 2011 Amgen Award for Excellence in Science Teaching.
Currently, my research interest is in the field of staff recruitment and retention. My years as a science supervisor made me keenly aware of the challenges of finding and retaining qualified educators in the fields of mathematics and science. Because of this experience, I hope to investigate the factors that contribute to the success of second-career science educators.
My Ph.D. studies thus far have expanded my experiences and knowledge as an educator. I see this educational journey as a way to grow personally and professionally. While I am not sure of my next role in education, I am excited to know that this experience will provide new opportunities for me!