Testimonials from Teacher Participants in POS
Longtime POS participant and supporter, Steve Rodecker (Chula Vista High School), poses with Nobel Laureate Hamilton Smith (right) at the October 21, 2014 POS event.
Marisa Alvarado (Monte Vista High School) Coming to POS every month is a little special treat to myself. I get to see friends and catch up with them. And even better is the new information I learn from the researchers. My students love the information I come back with each month.
Lauren Bennett (CityTree Christian School) Participating in POS gives me the great opportunity to connect and learn from teachers and professionals in the field of science. Also, I enjoy sharing what I learn with my students.
Michaela Bertch (Cathedral Catholic High School) The Perspectives on Science Seminars have been stimulating and have given me the excitement I felt in graduate research. I bring info. from every seminar back into the classroom to my students in chemistry and advanced chemistry. I point out connections between what they are learning and actual research topics of today. The seminars continue to inspire me and my students to follow current scientific research in multiple fields. POS serves an important role in my chemistry curriculum.
Jocelyn Broemmelsiek (San Dieguito High School Academy) POS has been an incredible opportunity for me. Every presentation was informative and engaging. Topics that I never thought would intrigue me, did. I was particularly impressed with the passion and concern each presenter had as well as their openness to questions and their ability to help their audience understand the scope and placement of their work.
Courtney Browne (San Diego Unified School District) I have continually used what I've learned from the POS lectures by incorporating them into my lessons for students. POS is a fabulous opportunity for teachers. Other teachers that I have invited to attend, have shared with me how much they have also enjoyed the lectures and how they also incorporate their learnings into their lessons for students. Thank you to PLNU for organizing such a great thing for science teachers!
Jeff Bush (Del Norte High School) I look forward to these lectures. As a teacher, we mostly remove ourselves from doing science research and don't have enough time to keep up with the latest news in the areas we teach. These lectures force me to stay up to date; and my students like my "reports" of what the lectures are about. It also lets my students know I am a student also...still learning!
Juli Cheskaty (Del Norte High School) POS has been a great opportunity to increase my depth of knowledge in the biological sciences. It has also challenged me to research topics outside of my comfort zone. I enjoy the opportunity for life-long learning POS offers.
Debbie Culley (Santa Fe Christian School) I always have a little "tidbit" to either take back to my students the next day, or add to an upcoming unit.
Beverly Dorsey-Clifford (Sunnyslope Elementary School) I just wanted to thank you so much for organizing the amazing lecture series at Point Loma Nazarene. I really didn't know what to expect the first year that I participated. I guess I didn't have high expectations. Wow!! I was really engaged, challenged and pleasantly surprised by the caliber of the events. Again~ thank you for orchestrating this amazing series.
Patricia Evans (Challenger Middle School) As a teacher and biologist, I look forward to POS each month as a way to stay current and remain connected to the sciences, in all their beautiful forms. When possible, I try to share what I have learned at POS with my students. Science is changing by leaps and bounds and we, as educators, must take responsibility for exposing our students to that change. POS provides the conduit for that exposure.
Jasmine Feser (Julian Charter) I thoroughly appreciate and enjoy this POS lecture series for so many reasons. All of the speakers are interesting and I am able to bring back this wealth of information to my classroom and students. I also appreciate the opportunity to converse with other teachers, give and receive ideas and useful teaching tips. Lastly, the gourmet dinners we are treated to are an added perk.
Mary Ann Fuller (Chula Vista High School) 2013-The Perspectives on Science series at PLNU is one of the best professional development opportunities for San Diego teachers. It's like spending quality time at the spa; I come back refreshed, renewed and ready to teach again. 2012-These monthly meetings serve as mini-sabbaticals for me. I look forward to my monthly mental health day on campus. All the difficulties of teaching melt away as soon as I come on to the campus. Hearing top notch scientists is exciting and invigorating. The lectures are extremely informative. The POS series is a treasured resource for me.
Amy Garvin-Reifke (Chula Vista High School) The POS lectures get me excited about science and motivate me to share my new knowledge with my students. The excitement is contagious and sparks interesting conversations in the classroom. This is the type of professional development that is hard to come by. The need for science teachers to stay on top of current research is underestimated. I rush to sign up for this program each year. Thank you to everyone behind the scenes who make it happen.
Muriel Gross (Thurgood Marshall Middle) I am a middle school teacher with 22 years experience. POS is thought provoking and expands my personal zone of knowledge. As I stand and deliver, science makes exponential leaps. As I spend much of my life in the classroom, the rate of accumulated science rapidly surpasses my science knowledge. POS provides the opportunity to learn what is current in many areas of science. POS provides in-depth lectures on current topics. Much of what I learn, I share with my students, creating interest in science.
Paul Hannasch (Knox Middle School) Attending for the past 3 years has truly raised the level of my knowledge of the different sciences and vastly improved my vocabulary. This also gave me credit for professional development from my district. I have to tell you that for the first 2 meeting I was "lost"; not until my 3rd meeting did things start to "click" and I was understanding (almost) everything. I'm a 7/8th grade science teacher without a science major background who has taught at this level for the past 19 years. Attending has made me feel like I've been lifted to a new level of science knowledge. Thanks!
Rose Hanscom (Francis Parker Upper School) I teach AP Biology, AP Chemistry and Environmental Science. Everytme I come to a POS lecture, I bring something back to my classes. It is an invaluable experience. In particular, my AP Biology students are able to learn a lot from my experience. I have used Power Point Lectures from POS for both ES (native vs. Argentine ants) and AP Biology (flower development). Thanks so much!
Bart Hays (Helix Charter High School) I have been attending these lectures since they began (in 1998) and have used these opportunities to nurture my network of contacts to expand education in sciences.
Christie Hoover-Smelko (Monte Vista High School) I love the opportunity to hear about science from local scientists and then use it in my classroom. Educators get few chances to meet in a "focused but informal setting". Thanks for the chance.
Betty Jensen (Steele Canyon High School) Enjoyed this year very much. I often brought information learned on Tuesday night into my classroom the next day. Students enjoy knowing their teacher is still interested in learning too!
David Johnson (Francis Parker Upper School - 34 years) Keep it going! Absolutely tremendous program. Year in and year out the lecturers are spot on. Wonderful setting, tremendous food, an intellectual and academic oasis for high school teachers. Refreshing that a private university has made the committment to the greater San Diego scholastic community.
Eve Jones-Burton (Chula Vista Middle School -13 years) I have attended POS for many years, and consider the lectures to be a vital part of my continuing education as a middle school science teacher. The speakers are leading edge scientists, and I am frequently almost stunned by the information. I find myself repeatedly referring to the lectures in my classroom. I'm introduced to topics that I'm immediately using in my teaching of middle school general science. My students ask questions about so many topics, and I find myself better able to answer. I look forward to these cutting-edge lectures and rearrange my schedule as necessary to attend.
Jay Klopfenstein (Park University-Camp Pendleton/Carlsbad Schools – 31 years) I have to say each lecture in the "POS" program added to and changed many of my viewpoints on the topics. Each presenter was an expert and on the cutting edge in their field of study. What impressed me most was the willingness by each presenter to answer all the questions that we asked about their topic. Thank you... I appreciate all the effort you put into this POS dinner/lecture series.
Stephanie LaBerge-Luhnow (Grossmont High School) This program gives the classroom teacher the chance to learn about cutting edge science. It’s a very unique and wonderful program that gives us the opportunity to meet with our colleagues and maintain these important connections.
Rebecca Margolis (Sunnyslope Elementary School – 16 years) My husband (Dale Steele) and I have just recently joined the group that meets monthly for the Perspectives on Science series at PLNU. We have been both surprised and delighted by the high quality of the guest speakers and the accessibility of their lectures. We are always stimulated by the evening event and find ourselves continuing the conversation days later. We look forward to this year's series that will again bring us all together again to continue our personal growth in the field of Science.
Donna Markey (Vista Magnet Middle School for Math, Science and Technology) Attending the POS Seminars has been like going back to college. I am challenged with research and perspectives I had not thought about before. I rarely have time to learn about cutting edge research so attending these events is always a treat!
Gail Massey (Coronado High School) I stay updated on the newest advances in science by attending POS. Plus, I get to talk to fellow science teachers from throughout the county. POS helps keep me sane.
Arlene MaSuy (Otay Ranch High School) I am an English teacher and I have found that these lectures have been helpful in my discipline. When teaching something like Lord of the Flies, it's interesting to be able to make connections to marmoset behavior. Or be able to tell students that the literary term "synesthesia" has a scientific explanation.
Brian McBride (Otay Ranch High School) I eagerly look forward to those POS Tuesday nights when I get to hear an expert presentation on an up-to-date topic of science, chat with my colleagues, and enjoy a good meal at a beautiful campus. I encourage my colleagues to attend when they have the time; afterwards we frequently talk about the subject matter. I have been coming for quite a few years and look forward to many more in the future. It is a great program-thank you for providing us with this opportunity!
Chris McGaugh (Scripps Ranch High School) I have been going to POS off/on for the past 5+ years. I've really appreciated the speakers' topics as they have really spurred me on to incorporate these topics into my classroom lessons. Further, it has kept me current in the ever-changing field of Biology. As long as this program exists, I will attend...I consider this a #1 priority for me to stay involved with for my teaching career. It's THAT important to me. Thank you for subsidizing this wonderful program for the SD county teachers.
Leslie McIntyre (La Presa Middle School) This is a fantastic venue for educators to interact with "real" scientists on the forefront of their fields. The information that I have been able to share with my classes has been invaluable. Thank you for providing this!
Lisa Morgan (El Cajon Valley High School) I have found POS to be a wonderful experience and I look forward to coming back next year. Everything from the warm and friendly staff, to the interesting topics presented, to the delicious hors d’oeuvres and dinner, make POS a delight to partake in. I highly recommend this program to anybody who loves science and good company!
Donna Nasset (Vista Grande Elementary School –retired after 33 years) POS is a program that puts me on the "cutting edge" of science. Each lecturer enlightens me with new knowledge which I excitedly share with my students. I have thoroughly enjoyed the cutting edge science that has been taught by leading doctors and researchers. The course topics are varied which is wonderful because, as an elementary school teacher, I am called upon to expose my students to all aspects of science. Thank you very much for the incredible opportunity to make science come alive and be extremely relevant to my students and me. I look forward to several more years of the privilege of hearing top scientist who excite the minds and hearts of the teachers who attend the course.
Carol Palmiotto (Cathedral Catholic High School) I appreciate the variety and quality of the lectures. POS is my monthly "salvation of sanity" from teaching high school.
Jorgina Pau-Hall (Otay Ranch High School) The POS program has been the missing element in my professional development. Most professional development programs offer courses on instruction and pedagogy. Finally, there is a program to help me update my content knowledge. I hope that the POS program can continue for many years to come.
Joseph Puzo (Point Loma High School) All this cutting edge science is important for everyone (especially students). It additionally shows that science is dynamic and not static (like history).
Eric Renaker (Castle Park High School) 2013-The Perspectives on Science lecture/dinner series is both educational and fun. That is, if you enjoy meeting new people and learning new things in a relaxed, convivial, and collegial atmosphere. And the food is darned good too. :) 2012-The Perspectives on Science lecture series at PLNU is my idea of adult entertainment. The speakers are always top-notch, and the variety of topics both broadens and deepens my understanding of the current state of the art in science. Plus I get to meet lots of cool teachers whose acquaintance I would otherwise probably never make. The whole experience energizes me, and I take that with me into the classroom.
Steve Rodecker (Chula Vista High School) POS is a wonderful science professional development opportunity. The speakers provide concise, focused, cutting-edge information, and I constantly enhance and update my lessons with nuggets gleaned from their talks. The Q&A session allows interaction with the speakers, and dinner provides collegial time with fellow teachers.
Noelle Ruiz (Perris Union High School) I am a new graduate of the Point Loma Nazarene University Graduate Biology Program and I am in my eighth year of teaching at Perris High School in Riverside County. I decided to go back to school two years ago because I felt like my own personal learning had stagnated. I wanted to study more in depth about the field that I had chosen to teach in. If all of the content I was teaching my students was in the textbook, how are they supposed to apply it when they moved beyond high school into their everyday lives? By integrating teaching and biology into a graduate program, Point Loma has given me the knowledge and resources go beyond the ordinary in my classroom, to give my students knowledge about current practices in science that could potentially have a large effect in their lives. Even though I have graduated now, the Perspectives on Science program gives me a perfect way to continue my education and stay updated on current research. It gives me a place to go where I can discuss important topics with like-minded individuals. It gives me innovative ideas to incorporate into my classroom, so that I can continue to educate the next generation in the best way possible.
Lisa Schenck (Twain High School) POS is a fantastic opportunity. Teachers are exposed to cutting edge science with direct applications to the classroom. It is also wonderful to network with other teachers.
Adina Sobo (Samuel F. B. Morse High School -23 years) 2013-POS keeps me up-to-date on molecular biology and genetics, and exposes me to scientific disciplines outside my own area. The dinner allows me a chance to hear what my colleagues are doing and get their own perspectives on the speakers. Plus, I got to use attendance as a Stull Objective. 2012-The Perspectives on Science program have been very valuable to me in my classroom, both by allowing me a chance to mix with my equally-dedicated colleagues and -- more importantly -- by allowing me insight into current research and information. My Master's degree was awarded back when we only just were starting molecular genetics, and the lecturers have been amazingly clear and concise (far more so than trying to read technical journals!) in bringing my knowledge of the field up to date.
Greg Steinbach (Mira Mesa High School-6 years) The POS lecture series provides an invaluable venue for teachers to learn about cutting-edge science in our area AND to interact with students, teachers, scientists, and administrators from various backgrounds. The presentations provide great inspiration and insight which can be immediately applied to our classroom instruction and further engaging students. The interactions with colleagues in the collegiate environment is fantastic primarily due to the fact that the focus of the discussions is on science and the topic presented with input from a diverse group of professionals. This is extremely beneficial as many professional development opportunities are based at the school-site or district and discussions in these venues are often more focused on problems and politics, rather than on science topics and improving student engagement. I very much want to thank PLNU, HHMI, and SEASAND for making these opportunities possible for the teachers in our region as they energize our teachers and have a direct, positive impact on student learning!
Karoly Tippets (Coronado Middle School) The Perspectives on Science (POS) lecture series is of great benefit to our schools and, ultimately, our community. As the push for STEM/STEAM career training increases at a national level, San Diego teachers have a great opportunity to influence the occupational paths our students choose to pursue. By learning about and then sharing the most current experimental techniques or adding depth to the knowledge we impart to our students, we can get them excited about careers in Science.
Sharen Vandenbroek (Tri City Christian School -16 years) As a Christian high school science teacher it was always my goal to get my students into the UCSD science program. It wasn’t until I started attending POS that I realized my students could get a great science education in a Christian environment. This year, 4 out of our top 6 students will be attending PLNU, 3 of them in science. POS gave me the opportunity to see PLNU’s science program in action, get to know the professors, and feel comfortable recommending it to my students.
Susan Walkey (Options Secondary School - 15 years) The monthly POS meetings have been very valuable to me personally and as a classroom teacher. I teach in a small independent study program where there is little interaction with other science teachers, so the POS meetings give me a chance to socialize and network. The lectures are always fascinating, and provide material for me to communicate to my students. After being with 7th through 12th graders all day, I appreciate the opportunity to learn about science with other educators and get re-energized for the rest of the month (till the next POS seminar)!!
Yuchiao Wu-Walden (Helix Charter High School) I have been teaching for 7 years. I love learning about and listening to the latest research of our local scientists. It really helps us keep in the loop on the latest research!