I came to Alabama in 1995 to study stream ecology at The University of Alabama. I currently work as an instructor at the Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School (JCIB). After completing my third year at JCIB, I can honestly say I’ve had a blast. I know I belong in the classroom and laboratory, and I’ve got the results to prove it. Over the past three years, I helped 153 students pass the AP Biology exam (roughly 80% of my students). My students have maintained a 71% pass rate on the IB Biology portion of their diploma program over the same time frame. I have led Alabama in total number of passing scores in ap biology over the past two years, and I was recently selected as an Alabama state finalist for the 2015 Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching (PAMEST). My primary assignment is teaching a combined ib and ap biology course, but I teach one section of ib environmental systems and societies, and I developed and taught a research and design class for 9th and 10th graders.
Prior to joining the JCIB faculty, I was Science Content Director for A+ College Ready, an AP Training and Initiative Program in Alabama. We are partners with the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI). I worked with 80+ AP science teachers in 41 high schools throughout Alabama. Prior to that I was an AP Biology and AP Environmental Science Instructor at the Alabama School of Fine Arts. I started my teaching career in the Birmingham metro area at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), Birmingham-Southern College, and Samford University. I also consult for PASCO Scientific, working as a curriculum writer and professional technology educator (PTE). Each summer I work as Laying The Foundation (LTF) Trainer for Middle School science teachers. My job is to teach my colleagues how to incorporate science and engineering practices into their science classes.
I hold a B.A. in Biology from Rhodes College, and a M.S. in Biology from the University of Alabama. I am a National Board Certified Teacher in Adolescent and Young Adult Science Education with a concentration in biology.
Prior to teaching (and graduate school) I had some of the greatest jobs ever. I was a research technician at the Univerisity of Tennessee-Memphis working on cell signaling in cardiac myocytes. Even more formative were the summers I spent at the University of Notre Dame Environmental Research Center (UNDERC) coordinating the collection and classification of benthic macroinvertebrates from three lakes. I was also a lowly undergraduate researcher at the University of Goergia’s Savannah River Ecology Lab (SREL).
When I’m not working; I’m hanging out with my family, running (getting my best ideas), working around the house, or paddling some of Alabama’s 77,000+ river miles.
Apparently, some people are foolish enough to believe I’ve developed leadership skills during my tenure as a science teacher. Therefore, I’ve been offered (and accepted) several volunteer positions. I served two years as the Cubmaster for Pack 386 in West Homewood, Alabama, and I am currently a Webelos leader; I serve as an Elder at First Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, Alabama, and I’ve just been selected to serve on the Board of Directors for the Presbytery’s Living River, a retreat and conference center on the Cahaba River. My main role with Living River is as board representative for the Science Advisory Council for the newly minted Cahaba Environmental Center at Living River.