Do you remember your favorite teacher?  What impact did they have on your life?

This week is National Teacher Appreciation Week 2018, which is your chance to #ThankATeacher.  Whether it’s a teacher you’ve had in the past, or a teacher that your child has now, this nationwide event gives us the opportunity to share our gratitude.

As an environmental laboratory, we understand the value and influence of educators in the STEM fields, and wanted to know more about the science teachers that influenced us.  We asked our team about their favorite science teacher growing up, and how they influenced their career choice in STEM.  Here’s what they had to say:

Sara DiGiampaolo, Laboratory Analyst, Inorganic Chemistry

His name was Mr. Katz. I had him for 5th grade general science.  Mr. Katz was my favorite Science Teacher because he made the subject fun. He had interesting and interactive experiments for us just about every day. He was also very friendly and easy to learn from.  He played a huge role in my love for science. If it wasn’t for him, the class, and his awesome experiments I would probably not have followed my passion for the subject. I thank him a lot for the influence he had on my career choice.

Kelly Mays, Project Manager

Miss Neil – 4th Grade. While I had some really great science teachers, from whom I learned so much (chemistry, physics throughout high school and college), Miss Neil’s 4th grade science class was where I remember falling in love with the subject. We covered weather, the solar system, we hatched baby chicks, all of those fascinating topics.  Her class really made me want to learn more about how the universe worked.  She clearly loved science, and that enthusiasm rubbed off on her students.  It led me to want to take more advanced science classes, and I eventually majored in Atmospheric Science in college, and went on to get a Masters in Atmospheric Science with a specialty in atmospheric chemistry.

Carrie Miller, Quality Assurance

Mrs. McConnell, grade 10, Chemistry.  She ran Science in Motion, a local college’s high school science program (and I eventually attended that college for chemistry).  She was inspiring with her patience and passion for teaching.  She was a role model for me as a female in science. I took Chem I, Chem II and Chem III with her – Chem III was an independent study so I worked very closely with her.  Coincidentally the independent study that I did was based on water hardness and how it affects appliances in the home.  Now I’m working in environmental science!

Elizabeth Shultz, Director of Operations

Mr. (Jim) Marshall—high school chemistry. He made science fun and incorporated it into everyday life.  He was passionate about science and teaching. A friend and I once got extra credit for a project on how many licks it took to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop.  It wasn’t overly scientific, but we applied scientific theories into the experiment.  He allowed us to organize the experiment, gather data from the rest of the class, and come up with a conclusion with the average number…and free candy for all!   Although I went to school for Biology, he helped me appreciate science and just made learning fun!

Allyse Van Zee, Client Services Director

Mr. Hawk, 11th and 12th  Grade.   Mr. Hawk taught Anatomy and Environmental Science.  He was always playing jokes on students and made coming to his class fun.  He always called me by my big sister’s name to make me mad!   I decided to study Environmental Science because I loved learning about the natural world around me, being able to identify plants and animals and enjoy myself outside.  Mr. Hawk made everything so fun.  And now I can name a lot of the common Pennsylvania birds!

Go online today and recognize your favorite science teacher using #ThankAScienceTeacher.