Brigham Young University-Idaho
I had a super-supportive family and an amazing high school physics teacher, and an excellent college advisor that inspired my love for physics. I ended up in teaching at least partly because of a talk Sheila Tobias gave at the University of Utah during my master’s work, which led me to five years of teaching high school and then subsequent PhD research at Utah State and a job at Ricks College that turned into BYU-Idaho underneath me.
I joined AAPT as an undergrad in 1991 and have kept my membership since then. AAPT saved my career and sanity as a high school teacher feeling alone and neglected. My first AAPT section meeting (circa 1995) changed everything. Knowing that there were thoughtful and engaged people caring about what I cared about and willing to share their expertise and passion with me was eye-opening and life-changing.
I now direct BYU-I’s physics education program and research group. I also serve as the Higher Education representative to the Executive Board of the Idaho Science Teachers Association, the AAPT Idaho-Utah Section Representative, The Vice Chair of our local county school board, and serve on the AAPT meetings committee and am the Vice Chair of the AAPT area committee on Science Education for the Public. I formerly served on the AAPT Physics in High School Committee, the AAPT Nominating Committee, and Chaired the AAPT Committee on Women in Physics.
I love being in a place and profession that inspires me to keep learning new things and improving myself while helping in so many meaningful ways to improve what’s happening now for a brighter future. Victor Weisskopf wrote inspiringly of the Joy of Insight and the Privilege of Being a Physicist, and I completely share his feelings on both counts.