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STEM Professional Development

Professional Development for School Districts & Educators

Working over 25 years in the high technology, aerospace, defense, and security industries with engineers and years as a highly qualified certified educator in the State of Arizona, Cheryl Christensen is more than qualified to guide your District or organization towards a solid STEM focused professional development program.


Beginning at the top with District Leadership and Principals, Cheryl will help identify all stakeholders required to build a successful program including the local community, parents, institutions of higher education, local research organizations, teachers, and students.  One size does not fit all and the program will be customized to meet the immediate and long-term vision of the organization.  


Cheryl loves the use of Gamification in teaching and is a huge fan of Karl Kapp, a thought leader in Gamification.  She taught 3D Modeling and Animation while an Assistant Professor at Grand Canyon University (GCU) using Autodesk Maya and can recommend free open source 3D modeling tool options.  Adobe Creative Suite was a core tool in the Digital Design Program of Study she built while working for GCU.  Her program included an emphasis in Animation and an emphasis in Web Design.  


She taught Advanced Web Design at Arizona State University as an intern to Dr. Alice Christie, PhD, her mentor and faculty advisor.  Dr. Christie is a regular presenter at ISTE, the International Society for Technology in Education, and the founder of Tynkertopia.org, a STEM/STEAM Workshop located in Flagstaff, Arizona.


Cheryl presented "From Conventional Learning to E-Learning to Game-Based Learning"  at the AECT Conference in 2011 while working on her PhD, before returning to Corporate in 2012.  Educational Technology is Cheryl's passion and applying it to promote STEM is a natural fit to make it come alive for the students and educators.  Real live experiences that can be shared, modeled, and recreated in the classroom will not only bring back excitement to the teacher but engage the students to love these subjects and fill the gap that is so prevalent in today's workplace.

Credentials

  • Currently enrolled - Business Analytics Certificate Program at Harvard University
  • PhD (ABD) in eLearning & Educational Technology at Northcentral University
  • Master's Degree in Education with Technology Emphasis at Arizona State University
  • Bachelor's Degree in Business (Finance emphasis) at Brigham Young University
  • Minor in Economics & Accounting at Brigham Young University

State of Washington Teaching Certifications (2019 - Present)

  • Washington State Teaching Certificate (Business & Marketing Endorsement)
  • Highly Qualified Middle Level Mathematics Endorsement (in process)
  • Career & Technical Education Endorsement (in process)

State of Arizona Teaching Certifications (2003 - 2010)

  • Highly qualified secondary educator in Business and Marketing Education
  • Highly qualified Career & Technical Education


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Keynotes

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Building a Hands-on STEM Program

Has your school been tasked with revamping its programs of study?  Listen to a nine year educator and the journey they took leaving industry after 18 years to teach in a Title I high school in Arizona.  Seven programs of study were built, including the critical Career & Technical Education (CTE) and a Student Organization of Future Business Leaders of America and DECA programs.  An Academy of Finance and an Advisory Board established that opened the door to an Assistant Professorship.


Hired to teach a program that needed a revamp, the process used at Grand Canyon University in the creation of a new University Degree approved by the Higher Learning Commission will be shared in this Keynote presentation and how it always starts with the Audience and the Stakekholders!  

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Workers Not Prepared for Jobs of Today, Let Alone Tomorrow

Who is at fault?  Academia or Industry?  No one!  A timeline of the changing nature of work will be shared and the escalating scale of innovation that started with Moore's Law. This keynote highlights the importance of STEM professional development.

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Building a Win/Win Partnership

What's In It for Me?  Why should industry get involved teaching STEM?  How can industry get involved?  What do educators need to do to create a Win/Win for industry by building a collaborative partnership?  


Having access to critical corporate sponsorships will enable educators to build STEM classrooms and participate in critical STEM professional development.  Students will explore STEM careers and conduct experiments with the aid of subject matter experts from industry.  Content subject matter experts "+" Application subject matter experts from industry "=" a Winning Partnership.