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Sarah Spector

Sarah Spector

2016 Fellow
McGann-Mercy High School
Riverhead, New York

Teaching Discipline

Biology and Environmental Education

Why Biology and Environmental Education

“I first became interested in biology through outdoor recreation. I loved looking around and having a deeper understanding of the processes I could observe and the natural history of an area. In college, I decided to pursue environmental studies because of the emphasis placed on addressing the social, ethical, and environmental issues societies deal with that are related to science.”  

Professional Experience

On a seasonal basis while in college, Sarah worked as a white water rafting guide in the Rogue and Klamath Rivers in southern Oregon. After completing her undergraduate studies, she worked for the National Park Service at Crater Lake National Park as an interpretive ranger. In this role, she developed content for tours, talks, guided hikes, and the junior ranger program. Additionally, Sarah designed and facilitated place-based science curriculum for a six-week program that brought fourth through sixth grade classrooms into the park for day-long field trips. It was in this role that she fell in love with teaching. Prior to enrolling in graduate studies, Sarah performed state and federal drinking water compliance testing as an environmental lab technician for the Metropolitan Water District of Salt Lake and Sandy (Utah). Sarah began teaching full time at West High School in January 2016.  

Volunteer Experience

While at the National Park Service, Sarah served on the backcountry ski patrol. She also volunteered as a judge for the Salt Lake City District Science Fair and as a ski instructor for She Jumps, an organization that focuses on empowering women of all ages and increasing their participation in outdoor activities.

Hobbies

Sarah enjoys trail running, skiing, time on the river, hiking, biking, cooking, and reading.

Academic Background

  • Westminster College (Utah) (Master of Arts in Teaching: Secondary Education)
  • Southern Oregon University (Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies: Biology)

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I hope that students leave my classroom better critical and independent thinkers than than when they entered. I also hope that I can encourage their curiosity and help them appreciate the wonder of science and the natural world.

Sarah Spector
2016 Fellow