Brynn Slate has managed NSTA web seminars and symposia since October 2011. She brings
previous experience managing webinars and partnerships from her role as Manager
of Communications and Programs at the National Association of Women Business Owners.
She has also worked as Assistant Grower and Outreach Coordinator at the Local Food
Project at Airlie, as Senior Editor at the National Captioning Institute, and as
a substitute teacher for Arlington Public Schools. Brynn has a master’s degree in
Urban Environmental Leadership from Lesley University and a bachelor’s degree in
Creative Writing from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.
Jeff Layman been with NSTA since 2000 and has provided technical assistance in over
600 live web seminars. In addition to his role as technical coordinator for web
seminars, Jeff also provides support to users accessing the Learning Center’s other
resources, including Science Objects, SciPacks, and online short courses.
Christina has nine years of experience in international education and ICT across
Europe. Her focus has been on collaborative learning and professional development
through technology. She has co-authored a number of publications, including My eTwinning
Cookbook: 50 recipes for school collaboration and professional development in Europe
Christina holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English and French from the University of
Western Ontario, and a Master’s Degree in French Literature from the University
Vanessa Friedman received her BS in Science Education with an emphasis in Chemistry
from the University of Arizona in 2005. Immediately following, she taught 8th grade
Science at Challenger Middle School for three years. During that time, she also
pursued an MS in Biology with the University of Arizona, completing the degree in
2009. From 2008-2010, she was a STEM Instructor for a Department of Defense program
called STARBASE. The program brought underpriviledged 5th grade students onto the
local military base and gave them experiences in launching rockets, programming
robots and many other STEM activities. She is currently a Campus Center Director
for Park University and an Adjunct Faculty member for the Biology Department at
Pima Community College. In her spare time, she enjoyes playing tennis and spending
time with family and friends.
Sue Hokkanen is a middle grades science teacher with experience teaching in the
secondary setting. Sue was awarded a fellowship into the NSTA New Science Teacher
Academy, 2009-2010. She earned her Master of Science in Science Education from Montana
State University. She has conducted teacher training workshops at the Museum of
Science and Industry (MSI) in Chicago on Polar Science and at MSI and NSTA conferences
on the 5E Learning Cycle and formative assessments. She is also currently working
as an Online Advisor in the NSTA Learning Center. She invites educators to stop
by the Learning Center, ask questions through the online support link, and even
get help with signing up for web seminars.
Liz McMillan is a Colorado Native, transplanted to South Dakota. Liz lives in South
Dakota with her husband, new baby (Mason – Aug 2012), 2 dogs, lizard, snake, and
fish. She earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Denver and her masters
at the University of Colorado at Denver. She taught MS Science in Flandreau, South
Dakota for 5 years before becoming the Education Coordinator at Sanford Research.
She now leads the Sanford PROMISE - Program for the Midwest Initiative in Science
Exploration (an education outreach program) – for the research arm of the largest
health care company in the North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa region
(Sanford Health). Liz enjoys working directly with scientists and hospital administrators
when developing hands-on, problem-based activities for students of all ages. One
of her favorite parts of her job is hosting groups of students K-100 at the Community
Lab in the heart of the research facility and providing teacher workshops for area
educators. You may see her at regional and national science and STEM teacher conferences;
if so, please say Hi!
Conor O’Rourke has been a web seminar moderator since 2012 and finds it exciting.
In the past he moderated a number of seminars while in the Boy Scouts of America
and that made moderating NSTA web seminars a fine fit. Conor attended Northern Virginia
Community College and James Madison University and has since worked in the education
field. He started working as a lunch-time and after-school supervisor and is now
a substitute teacher. Work as a substitute has often required quick thinking at
a spur of the moment, which has also been a helpful skill while moderating web seminars.
Robert Payo is the Educational Technology Coordinator for School and Teacher Programs
at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. Robert formerly served as the Outreach
and Education Manager for the National Science Digital Library (NSDL), coordinating
and moderating NSDL's web seminar series for NSTA for four years. He has also managed
school programs for the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and the Oregon Museum
of Science & Industry. Robert has committed his career to creating a connection
between community members, educators, and science professionals in promoting and
actively engaging communities in science literacy and understanding the significant
role that science plays in our lives. Robert holds a B.A. in the Biological Sciences
from the University of Colorado at Boulder and an M.A. in Counseling Psychology
from the University of Colorado at Denver.
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