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Teaching high school requires an integrated understanding of complex and abstract ideas, and the ability to communicate them.

Stephanie Kinkel
2012 Fellow

Stephanie Kinkel

2012 Fellow
Meridian Academy
Brookline, Massachusetts

Stephanie Kinkel was 10 years old when she took on teaching younger kids karate in exchange for her own lessons.  The sense of the value and the difficulty of sharing her knowledge with others has stayed with her and ultimately guided her towards a teaching career.  Stephanie has attended private schools, public schools in an affluent suburb, and a public school in downtown Los Angeles.  She worked as a teaching assistant at each of her post-secondary institutions including a community college; the University of California, San Diego (UCSD); and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Stephanie first became immersed in math and science as an Orange Coast Community College student.  There she was given a unique opportunity to run a lab where anatomical specimens were converted into plastic.  Contracted by the California Science Center, her team developed an exhibit comparing osteoporotic and healthy bone as a way to demonstrate the effects of space travel on the human body.

In all of her academic experience, Stephanie has noted three consistent traits of a great teacher:  strength, flexibility and knowledge.  “Teachers foster fascination by inspiring students to study something thoroughly and creatively.”  Stephanie earned a BS in molecular biology from UCSD and an MS in biology from MIT.  She spent several years conducting research at some of the nation’s most prestigious laboratories, including the Salk Institute and Merck.  Most recently, she served as a life sciences outreach teaching fellow at Harvard University.

Stephanie considers her journey from community college to MIT one of her most outstanding achievements.  A volunteer with Comfort Zone Camp and a member of Boston Volunteer Meetup, Stephanie values art and expression through different forms of dance and yoga.