I hope to help all my students see their potential as scientists.
Heidi Park 2012 Fellow
2012 Fellow Jones College Preparatory School Chicago, Illinois
As early as third grade, Heidi Park knew that she wanted to become a teacher. Yet when it came to choosing her major in college, Heidi opted for chemical engineering in the hopes that “it would meld both my science and math skills.” She earned a BS in chemical engineering from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology and an MS in chemical engineering from Cornell University-Endowed Colleges with the thought that she would go on to become a college professor. However, Heidi realized that research did not excite her and that her “academic success was closely tied to the passionate teachers I was fortunate to have throughout my life.”
As a teacher, Heidi hopes to encourage more young women to pursue math and science, because young women tend to “perceive themselves as being less skilled in these areas.” Her favorite teaching moment is “when a student finally understands how something works and then excitedly applies that new knowledge to something else that they know about the world.”
Heidi has volunteered with the Society of Women Engineers and is currently a volunteer at the Field Museum of Chicago as an exhibit docent. She is a recipient of the Corning Award for Excellence in Chemical Engineering Science and the Rose-Hulman Pfizer Award. Heidi looks forward to making her life-long interest in teaching a reality with the help of KSTF’s training and support. She hopes to teach in a multi-ethnic community. “Although teaching students with a diversity of backgrounds presents its own challenges, the resulting diversity of ideas in the classroom is invaluable both for students and me as a teacher.”