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Diane Cooper
Rancho High School
Las Vegas, Nevada

I teach at Rancho High School in Las Vegas for Clark County School District. Rancho has a total population of 3,700 students and about 75% are hispanic. Rancho offers a 4-year magnet program to students in the fields of Aerospace and Aviation. Rancho also offers a medical magnet program designed to introduce students to the career fields of medicine, sports medicine, biotechnology, and emergency medicine.

I teach two subjects: marine science and environmental science. Most of the students in my marine science classes are magnet students and the environmental science students are students who have failed principles of science, so I see a huge disparity between the two classes as far as the student economic position, motivation and attitude. I teach English language learners and their fluency skills vary from third grade to grade level. I keep my classes visual and kinesthetic with an abundance of pictures and hands-on labs.

I have been a science teacher for 4 years. My undergraduate degree is from California University of Pennsylvania in education with a biology certification. My master’s degree is from the Universtiy of Nevada, Las Vegas in Secondary Science Education. I am proud to say I am the first girl in my family to graduate college.

I am very interested in programs like Spaceward Bound because the knowledge and experiences gained from these types of ventures is invaluable. I am always trying to find and invest in the next wave of jobs for the future so I can go back to my classroom and transfer the information or even keep my eyes open for something that I may want to pursue. .

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Editor: Linda Conrad
NASA Official: Liza Coe
Last Updated: January 2010