UC Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science recently released “A Field at Risk: The Impact of COVID-19 on Environmental and Outdoor Science Education.”
Dr. Leena Bakshi studies STEM education and how we can create access and opportunities for every student, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, or socioeconomic status. Leena earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of California, Berkeley, her master’s degree in education from Claremont Graduate University, and a doctoral degree in educational leadership from the University of Southern California. She completed her dissertation on the successful implementation of STEM initiatives in lower-income schools after having researched schools throughout the state of California.
Leena worked as a teacher and master teacher, teaching math, science, and health in middle school and high school. She went on to work as a site administrator for continuation school students, served as the science program director at the Alameda County Office of Education, and served on the statewide network of science educators collaborating with teachers, instructional coaches, and administrators on the implementation of the NGSS, the Common Core, and English language development standards.
After seeing the limited access that underrepresented students have in STEM subjects, she founded STEM4Real, a nonprofit professional learning organization committed to combining STEM content learning with principles of equity and social justice. In addition to quality professional learning, the organization showcases real-life STEM stars who are breaking barriers and pioneering key breakthroughs in the STEM fields through children’s literature. Through this #4Real commitment, the organization hopes to increase the school-to-STEM career pipeline with a diversified STEM workforce that will continue to change the world.