I'm excited to share the news that starting today I am the Senior Manager of Digital Learning for the California Academy of Sciences. I am honored to be leading a crack team of youth development and digital media specialists, and to be part of an amazing youth programs family at the Academy.
If you had asked me three years ago where I would want to be working, what I would like to be doing, and who I would like to be working with, you would get an answer very close to where I actually work today. (Except back then I had no idea what a "cronut" was.)
For those that don't know, Digital Learning is part of the suite of youth programs that we offer here at the Cal Academy -- along with our middle school "Science Action Clubs," our "Careers in Science" internship program, our "TASC" team of teen science performers, and our teen science researchers the "Student Science Fellows." Digital Learning sets itself apart by combining the power of digital media with the wonders of science and the imagination of youth. Our digital learning teens get to do their own science investigations based on what they are interested in, play with cool tools like Adobe Premiere and Worldwide Telescope, and then design their own digital experiences for the public that teach them about science and sustainability.
For example our Digital Learning teens have:
- conceived and programmed a digital game on earthquake preparedness that is now played by thousands of our visitors in our earthquake exhibit
- explored space and created their own tours of the universe that they deliver to the public in a mini version of our planetarium
- hiked around Mt. Tamalpais in Marin and designed mobile scavenger hunts that visitors to Mt. Tam can play to learn about local flora and fauna
- investigated the problems associated with plastic use and waste in the Bay Area and designed their own social media campaign to get San Franciscans to be more environomentally responsible
And we are just getting started.
I'm incredibly excited about what my Digital Learning team is going to achieve and what our teens are going to create in this school year, and beyond. And I feel very blessed to be able to lead this work.