Each class has contributed to the development of my career as an educator and the work I do both in the classroom and beyond, but the overarching influence the program has had is to give me a context and framework to understand who I am as a person and what I have done in my professional career.
What new skills have you learned from the degree?
The primary skills I have learned from this degree are how to take a subject that I know well, and apply it to the classroom to spread the word about the importance of arts in education and in children’s lives.
Why did you choose the University of San Diego’s Master of Education Online versus other degrees?
I chose USD’s master’s program specifically for the STEAM specialty. I am by nature an artist and an interdisciplinary person who has been waiting a long time to find the right Master’s program for me and the highly specialized work I do. USD and I were in the right place at the right time for this important program.
Why did you choose to pursue the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) specialization?
I choose this specialty for two reasons. The first is that I am an artist who fell in love with anatomy when I was young. I have been very fortunate to have been able to combine my ability to draw with my interest in science. I also utilized technology in my career to produce specialized images for medicine and life science, which is by nature a STEAM profession. I thought it was time to give back what I have so generously been given by others through teaching the STEAM disciplines. The second reason I choose this specialty is that I believe the reduction in arts education has had a negative effect on education. All children deserve an arts education and being a STEAM advocate is my way of returning that to the educational experience.
Where is your current position in education?
I started teaching Digital Media Arts for Biotechnology at Golden West College last fall. Recently, I have been hired as an “Industry Professional Expert” to help deconstruct some old Silo-type programs into new programs in Design, Communications, and Manufacturing for Biotechnology. It now looks like there will be additional opportunities to manage Pathway Grants in Career Technical Education (CTE) for these specialties. These funding grants are meant to help coordinate and align student curriculum and programs in middle school and high school to ultimately prepare them for college and a professional career. This advanced curriculum will help students identify high tech art based careers, and link these paths though the educational system and out into the professional world.
What is your fondest memory of what you have accomplished so far in regards to instructing / teaching?
My fondest memory thus far has been learning. I love to learn and I love to teach, especially the arts. Being a lifelong learner has been important to me and getting the chance to do good work inside a quality program that trains me to help others has been fantastic. Professor Hansen’s class on creativity gave me the opportunity to dive deep down into a subject I have lived with for a lifetime and has helped position me to be able to speak about it, and other related subjects, on a state wide-level.