Letter from the Faculty Director

Greetings to all!

I am happy to introduce myself as the new Faculty Director of the CalTeach/Mathematics and Science Teaching (MAST) Program at UC Davis. I am a Professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, having taught at UC Davis for the past 29 years. I teach hundreds of undergraduates and graduate students each year, and I have long been committed to improving the quality of STEM education in my professional service activities in paleontology. I was honored to be asked to contribute to this mission on campus by serving as Director of MAST, following the retirement of founding Director Howard Day. Together with the wonderful MAST staff of program coordinators and lecturers, Professor Day built MAST to be the successful program it is today — much valued and very popular on campus.

Launched in 2005 by the University of California, CalTeach programs exist on each UC campus, and were created to help address the challenges posed by significant decreases in the number of individuals pursuing teaching credentials, particularly in STEM fields. As the next Director of UC Davis CalTeach/MAST, I intend to work hard to ensure the continued vitality of this great program on our campus. I look forward to strengthening and expanding the program, serving the community of UC Davis undergraduate STEM majors interested in exploring a variety of rewarding career options in K-16 STEM education.

The need for qualified and enthusiastic STEM teachers in California has never been greater. As you will see on our website, MAST offers coursework and internships designed to allow you to explore careers in STEM education from kindergarten through college level. With the help of MAST, you can build teaching and communication skills that are valued in every field of study. I invite you to investigate all that MAST has to offer you — it may be one of the most rewarding decisions you make!

Sandra J. Carlson