How did you connect with Beyond Benign?
My journey started when I took the online graduate course in Green Chemistry for High School teachers. I had never heard of green chemistry before and was very apprehensive about what I had just committed to. After taking the course, I was very interested and wanted to be more involved. My early work was with some of the people at Grand Valley State University who are involved in the Green Chemistry Commitment. From there, I went to a workshop at BCCE held at Steelcase. This is where my connection with Beyond Benign was formed. It has been an amazing experience and I am grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of something I feel so passionate about. The knowledge and connections I have made throughout this process have been priceless!
What first drew you into teaching and science education?
I originally was planning to go into veterinary medicine. After working at an animal hospital for many years and earning a degree in zoology, I had a change of heart. In reflecting about the parts of my job that I enjoyed the most, I realized it was really focused on education. From that moment on, I have never looked back. I could not imagine a more rewarding career and feel lucky to have the opportunity to share my passion for science with young people.
What excites you most about teaching green chemistry?
I love that green chemistry provides hope and an answer to the question of, “What can I do to help make the Earth a better place.” With so much negativity surrounding humans and their interactions on the environment, green chemistry gives me a way to help educate others about its role in creating a sustainable future for our children.