Teaching

Science and engineering will be essential in addressing humanity’s everchanging needs with respect to environmental, economic, energy, and public health issues. These problems require creative and diverse perspectives to solve, and an interdisciplinary education is indispensable for upcoming STEM professionals. Education is my passion, and I believe the constructive sharing of ideas is necessary to continue directing future generations in a positive direction.

One of the most important qualities of a STEM educator is the ability to reflect on one’s teaching and critically inquire, “Is this the best way to help my students learn?” Just as global challenges are everchanging and science is dynamic, so is education. My greatest experience with this idea comes from years of tutoring students from varied educational backgrounds. Each student understands concepts differently, and as an educator, I try to tailor my teaching style to the individual. I also found this to be the case for mentoring students; each individual has a unique perspective that may be leveraged to engender a positive learning experience for everyone involved. Consequently, I have developed a habit of viewing concepts through several different lenses to gain a more full representation of the idea at hand. Oftentimes, this means trying to activate resources from computational or other scientific knowledge domains. Therefore, I believe that a good educator should be versatile, inclusive, and reflective of one’s own teaching.

Lifelong Learning

I studied chemistry, physics, and mathematics at Saginaw Valley State University in Saginaw, Michigan. I enjoyed seeing how the different science disciplines worked together, and I took classes in biology and engineering as well at SVSU. I became a tutor in chemistry, biology, physics, and math at the Center for Academic Achievement for 3 of my 4 years at SVSU. I also privately tutored local high school students in the nearby area for ACT preparation and the sciences. In the 2013 winter semester, I completed my honors thesis work, titled “Contactless Resistivity via an LC Oscillator”, under the supervision of Dr. Matthew D. Vannette in physics. In my senior year, I had the pleasure of working as an undergraduate researcher in Dr. Jason P. Pagno’s chemistry lab. I was also fortunate to have the chance to work with researchers at Iowa State University and Ames National Laboratory through the Department of Energy’s Science for Undergraduate Laboratory Interns (SULI) program in the summers of 2013 and 2014. During these summers, I worked with Dr. Ludovico Cademartiri and Dr. Santosh Shaw in the Materials Science department at Iowa State and Ames Lab.

In May 2014, I graduated from SVSU with a double major B.S. in Chemical Physics and A.C.S. Chemistry with a minor in Mathematics. I began graduate school in pursuit of my PhD in Materials Science and Engineering at Michigan State University in August 2014.

Dan_Cademartiri_SULI
Dr. Ludovico Cademartiri and I at the Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory Summer Internship Symposium.
PaganoLab
Dr. Jason Pagano’s research lab.

 

Announcements

12/11/2017 – The SUTL Fellows met for their mid-year gathering where we discussed how to best impact student learning in the classroom and updated each other with our projects. Keep up the great work everyone!

9/27/2017 and 11/6/2017 – I have been welcomed back to Hope College to lead a guest lecture for the Chemistry 1 (CHEM 125) course under the advisement of Dr. Mary Anderson.

7/21/2017 – I am incredibly grateful towards the Hope College Chemistry Department for making my experience as a visiting graudate student so memorable and impactful. Special thanks to Dr. Mary Anderson, Andrew Ochs, and Grace Kunkel for the fantastic mentoring opportunity.

5/12/17 – I have finished as a TA for the P-cubed (PHY 183) course, but I’ll be working over the summer as a curriculum development team member for the transformed EMP-cubed (PHY 184) course next year!

5/2/2017 – Congratulations to all of the 2016-2017 FAST fellows for presenting their TAR projects at the FAST Symposium on 5/2/17! Thank you for the amazing professional development experience!

FastFellows
2016-2017 FAST Fellows!

5/2/17 – I have accepted a fellowship in the Scholarship of Undergraduate Teaching and Learning (SUTL) program through the Lyman Briggs College at MSU.

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