STEM Curriculum Development Consultant - SSU E/PO
Department of Physics and Astronomy – Sonoma State University
Rachel grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. She earned a B.S. in Biology from UC Davis and then did research at U.C. San Diego using electron microscopy to study hippocampal synaptic transmission. She then earned a M.S. in Neuroscience from Northwestern University, where she studied neural transmission using confocal microscopy and electrophysiology. Rachel then entered the teaching profession and was a high school chemistry and astronomy teacher for 10 years.
Rachel has been involved in educational research and curriculum design and implementation and she trains educators in the use of technology as a vehicle for change in education. In addition she is involved in astronomy education and public outreach bringing astronomy and spectroscopy to the public. As a member of the Robert Ferguson Observatory she gives public presentations on astronomy and cosmology and as a co-founder of the Institute for Student Astronomical Research she has worked to get high school students involved in original research. Rachel develops and implements teacher professional development programs, Her degrees in biology and neuroscience help to inform Rachel’s work in development of educational tools and curricula as well as outreach programs and teacher training.
In her spare time she loves swing dancing and ballroom dancing as well as food gardening for sustainability.