News



Announcing our 2020-2021 Cohort of Ambassadors

Thursday, April 2, 2020


The STEP UP Project is announcing the new cohort of Ambassadors, comprised of New and Returning ambassadors! Head over to their cohort page to see who's joining the team!
We're excited to welcome them to the project and hope that together we can all continue to reach teachers and share the STEP UP project. If you'd like reach out to any of our Ambassadors to request a connection or a future teacher PD (in-person or virtual), message us through our Contact Us page.

Announcing our 2020-2021 Ambassador Leads

Friday, Jan 31, 2020


The STEP UP Project is choosing its second cohort of Ambassadors to join us in reaching out to teachers around the USA. Haven’t applied yet? There’s still time before the extended deadline (Feb 3rd) - so apply now!

We are excited to announce our 7 Ambassador Leads from the first cohort who will be joining our Ambassador Program Coordinator, Bree Barnett Dreyfuss, in training and supporting our 2nd cohort. These awesome folks are Colleen Epler-Ruths, Alisa Grimes, Jolene Johnson, Brian Kays, Alma Robinson, Katherine Seguino, and Mike Wadness. See below for short biographies and their photos.

Join us in welcoming them to their new role and thanking them for their service to the STEP UP project! Stay tuned - we announce our 2020-2021 cohort (including those Ambassadors from our first cohort that are staying on for a second year) in a few weeks!

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Bree Barnett Dreyfuss - Ambassador Program Coordinator

Amador Valley High School Pleasanton, CA

Bree is the STEP UP Ambassador Program Coordinator. She contributed to developing the train-the-trainer program, selected 50 ambassadors for the first cohort and helped them recruit teachers to the STEP UP movement. She teaches physics at Amador Valley High School and is active in the local AAPT section.
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Colleen Epler-Ruths

Shikellamy High School Sunbury, PA

Colleen teaches physics and computer science at Shikellamy High School (Sunbury, PA). She received her PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from Penn State in 2019 and was a Finalist for PA Teacher of the Year 2020. She is involved with the PA Mid-State AAPT section.


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Alisa Grimes

Roaring Fork High School Carbondale, CO

Alisa teaches physics, biology and chemistry at Roaring Fork High School in Carbondale, CO. In addition to serving as a STEP UP Ambassador, she completed the AAPT/AIP master teaching policy fellowship. Alisa works with the University of Colorado - Boulder on STEM curriculum development and their “Physics Through Evidence: Empowerment through Reason” (PEER) programs.
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Jolene Johnson

Edison High School Minneapolis, MN

Jolene teaches all levels of physics at an inner city school in Minneapolis, MN. She received her MS and PhD in physics from University of Minnesota and taught at St. Catherine University for 6 years before switching to teaching high school in the 2018-2019 academic year.

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Brian Kays

Ramona Convent Secondary School Alhambra, CA

Brian teaches two levels of physics & AP Computer Science at Ramona Convent Secondary School, a private school in CA. He was an AAPT/AIP Master Teacher Policy Fellow, serves as Director of Innovation and Technology Integration and runs the MakerDen facility at his school. Brian also coached Women’s College basketball.
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Alma Robinson

Virginia Tech Blacksburg, VA

Alma is an Instructor/Teacher in Residence in the Department of Physics at Virginia Tech. She received the 2018 Alumni Teaching Award for Teaching Excellence. She previously taught at a high school in Northern Virginia and now helps recruit and train the next generation of high school physics teachers.

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Katherine Seguino

Naperville Central High School Naperville, IL

Katherine teaches physics and is the department chair at Naperville Central High School, where she also sponsors their “Girl Engineers, Mathematicians & Scientists” group. She participates in two independent student research programs: Quarknet, with Fermilab, and another affiliated with Argonne National Lab. She is currently finishing her doctorate in Educational Leadership at DePaul University.

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Michael Wadness

Medford High School Medford, MA

Michael teaches physics at Medford High School, outside of Boston, MA. He has worked with QuarkNet as a fellow. This included helping to create an online Virtual QuarkNet Center and working to develop and implement the international physics outreach program known as the International Particle Physics Masterclass. He has his Ed.D. from University of Massachusetts Lowell.



Past Newsletters


11/09/2018
1/11/2019
3/22/2019
5/17/2019
7/1/2019
9/10/2019
11/1/2019