About EarthScope ANGLE

The primary aim of the EarthScope Alaska Native Geoscience Learning Experience (EarthScope ANGLE) is to increase Alaskan resilience to geohazards through education and building of an action-oriented learning community. A synthesis of existing EarthScope educational materials and methods, translated to an Alaskan setting, will form the core of the programming. The learning community will bring together K-12 teachers, interpreters, emergency management and health & safety educators, and many stakeholders from rural Alaska Native villages, including students, their teachers, and Native Elders.

EarthScope ANGLE educational programing will have two main foci, Educator Professional Development Workshops for formal and informal educators and the Academies for Alaska Native students and their teachers, presented as part of the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP). To overcome geographic and cultural challenges that Alaska presents, program activities are designed to
1) make connections between the Anchorage School District and smaller school districts throughout the state, and
2) leverage existing programs that support Alaska Native populations, thereby maximizing stakeholder input and participation from remote coastal communities.

ANGLE goals are:

  1. Synthesize EarthScope educational resources for Alaskan and Alaskan Native context.
  2. Increase participant knowledge on Alaskan geohazards and EarthScope.
  3. Develop an informed and action-oriented Alaskan geohazards learning community.
The ANGLE program is building on successes from a similar program run in Washington and Oregon, where similar natural hazards are present. See also Cascadia EarthScope Earthquake and Tsunami Education Program.
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Who we are

Jennifer Witter is the Science Curriculum Coordinator for the Anchorage School District, Affiliate Faculty at Alaska Pacific University (APU), and Project Director of EarthScope ANGLE. With a background that spans the gap between scientific research and K-12 education, Witter has taught geology courses at both the high school and college level. She has experience with teacher preparation, curriculum alignment and assessment, and has been involved with a number of inter-agency affiliations tasked with improving science outcomes. She served on the Teacher's Advisory Board for the Hatfield Marine Science Center and the Oregon Coast Aquarium, and participated in the Oregon Coast Aquatic and Marine Science Partnership, a 3-year U.S. Department of Education Math and Science Grant designed to improve science instruction through collaboration between educators and science institutions. She is an instructor for both the educator workshops and the ANSEP Middle School Academies. Witter is the ANGLE Principal Investigator for APU.

Beth Pratt-Sitaula is a Research Associate at Central Washington University (CWU) and Science Education Specialist at UNAVCO, NSF's Geodetic Faculty. She has extensive experience with EarthScope, geohazard education, and educational assessment. She was Co-Director of the EarthScope-funded projects Teachers on the Leading Edge (TOTLE) and Cascadia EarthScope Earthquake and Tsunami Education Program (CEETEP). For UNAVCO she runs the GETSI Project (GEodesy Tools for Societal Issues), which develops undergraduate curriculum featuring geodesy data applied to critical societal challenges and includes a variety of resources using EarthScope GPS data from the Plate Boundary Observatory. She served on the EarthScope Speakers Series in 2017-18 and is on the EarthScope Education and Outreach Advisory Committee. Pratt-Sitaula spent three summers in Alaska as a natural history guide. For ANGLE Year 1, she will serve as the Assistant Project Director and Educator Workshop assistant instructor. Throughout the project she will serve as the Assessment Coordinator. Pratt-Sitaula is the ANGLE Principal Investigator for CWU.

Herb Schroeder, Executive Director and Founder, Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP), University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA). His responsibilities focus on catalyzing management and leadership opportunities aimed at affecting a systemic change in the hiring patterns of Indigenous Americans in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) professions. Longitudinal research efforts concentrate on developing programmatic components through partnerships with organizations inside and outside the university to increase university recruitment and retention rates through hands-on pre-college outreach initiatives, rigorous summer bridging programs, focused academic learning communities, organized student cohorts, effective peer and professional mentoring, community based learning, structured professional internships, undergraduate research, and graduate school programs. Schroeder is the ANGLE Principal Investigator for UAA.

Beth Spangler, National Partnership Director, ANSEP, UAA. Spangler's position at ANSEP has been supported since 2008 by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, United States Geological Survey (USGS), and most recently, the National Park Service. Responsibilities include supporting all ANSEP science components from middle school through high school and university components. She will serve as the primary liaison between ANSEP and ANGLE with the Middle School Academy and Career Explorations.

Robert Butler, Professor Emeritus of Environmental Studies at the University of Portland, was Co- Director and lead geoscience instructor for the EarthScope-funded TOTLE and CEETEP projects. Butler has served on the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology Education and Public Outreach (IRIS EPO) Standing Committee, has been co-author of IRIS Recent Earthquakes Teachable Moments since 2009, and worked with IRIS EPO to develop online teacher professional development courses. He has helped develop numerous IRIS seismology and plate tectonics animations, including animations about the Alaska 1964 Earthquake and Alaska Tectonics and Earthquakes. Butler will work with Principal Investigators and Master Teachers to adapt instructional materials and teaching methods to Alaska. He is also assisting with development of the ANGLE educator resource "kit" and serving as instructor for the Year 1 ANGLE Educator Workshop.

Bonnie Magura was middle school science teacher in Portland Public Schools from 1990 to 2010, the Oregon Science Teachers Association 1992 Outstanding Teacher and National Science Foundation's 2003 Presidential Award winner for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Teaching. She served as a Master Teacher for both TOTLE and CEETEP, helping develop and test classroom activities and providing a critical realistic classroom perspective during workshops. In ANGLE Year 1 she will aid in the transfer of existing EarthScope educational resources to the Alaska context.

Robert de Groot is the USGS Coordinator for Communication, Education, Outreach, and Technical Engagement for the ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning System. Prior to joining the USGS he worked for Southern California Earthquake Center as the manager of the Office of Experiential Learning and was heavily involved in initiating the Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill and Quake Catcher Network (QCN). He will serve as the primary trainer and technical consultant for integration of QCN into ANGLE.

Dan Belanger is the Earthquake & Tsunami Program Manager for Alaska Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Management and a member of the National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program. He coordinates research grants, mapping projects and outreach products with UAF and DGGS under the National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program. Dan works with NOAA Tsunami Education Programs, National Disaster Preparedness Training Center and emergency managers in creating community resilience for all hazards but focuses on Earthquake and Tsunami preparedness. Dan is a lifelong Alaskan and US Army Veteran where he served as a UH 60 helicopter mechanic/crew chief. He also holds an FAA A&P certificate. He earned his Bachelors of Science from Alaska Pacific University in Science and Education and taught geology and physical science in Alaska for 10 years. Dan continues to provide training and outreach opportunities to the entire state of Alaska.

Michael Coe , President of Cedar Lake Research Group, is the external evaluator and assessment advisor for ANGLE. He is a research psychologist with more than 20 years of experience in social and educational research, program and project evaluation, and psychological and educational assessment. Prior to founding Cedar Lake Research Group, Michael served as Director of Research in the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Assessment at Education Northwest from 2003 to 2010. His work in the Pacific Northwest has included numerous research and evaluation studies in Alaska as well as providing educational technology workshops for Alaska educators and administrators, and similar work in Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon. He has traveled extensively in rural Alaska, conducting site visits and interviews in coastal and inland villages, and will help adapt the CEETEP research and evaluation model for use in Alaskan cultural and professional settings.