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Princess/Teacher/Citizen Scientist

Authored By: 
Vanilla Macias-Rodriguez, Science Teacher

When I was young and adults asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, my simple response due to my love of Christa McAuliffe, Princess Diana, and the aunt I still look up to today was: princess/astronaut/teacher.  In 1986, my elementary teacher rolled a TV into the Science Corner and my classmates and I tearfully watched Christa McAuliffe, the first teacher trained to go into space, die in the Challenger Space Shuttle explosion.  Due to the early development of a strong case of self-preservation, I narrowed my future career choices to just princess/teacher.  In 2011 Prince William got married to Kate and I really wasn’t that in to Harry, so here I am, 20 years in to my teaching career.   I love teaching.  Let me clarify, I love teaching science.  It’s such an exciting topic.  However, if I had become a princess, I think I’d take up the cause of encouraging more students to enter careers in science.  I’d probably spend the hours I was not parading around in a tiara on websites like citizenscience.org or scistarter.org being a princess/citizen scientist.


Christa McAuliffe