Dr. Laurie Stepanek
Directorate for Education & Human Resources
Division of Human Resource Development
Class of 2013
Dr. Laurie Stepanek obtained her PhD in neuroscience from the University of Miami, where she studied proteins that regulate axon growth and guidance. She went on to do a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco where she studied the neural basis of vocal learning and plasticity in songbirds. At UCSF she was on the executive council of the Postdoctoral Scholars Association. She taught lab and lecture courses at UCSF and the University of San Francisco, in addition to partnering with elementary school teachers to teach science lessons in K-12 classrooms. Dr. Stepanek is interested in science education, program evaluation, and promoting collaboration between scientists so that limited funds can be used more effectively. During her fellowship in the Engineering Education and Centers Division, she will work on developing quantitative metrics and complex system models to evaluate educational investments. She is also interested in understanding qualitatively how education funding creates and supports a systemic impact on pathways to and through engineering degrees and career choices.