NISE 2022 Featured Speakers

  • Mei-Li Hey

    Section Head, Cryocooler Manufacturing at Northrop Grumman Space Systems

    Mei-Li spent the first five years of her career as a Mechanical Design Engineer on the James Webb Space Telescope supporting the Ground Systems Engineering Team. Her role on JWST was to design equipment to aid in the Integration, Test and Launch (IT&L) of the telescope, and she was part of the team that traveled to French Guiana to see it off at launch.

    Mei-Li received her Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from the University of San Diego and her Master’s in Engineering Management from UCLA. Mei-Li is a graduate of West Chicago High School.

    Mei-Li is also Co-Founder and President of Atwero, a nonprofit organization based out of Uganda, which designs and fabricates pit-latrine assistive devices to increase sanitation for persons with disabilities. She is passionate about her design engineering background to advocate for the consideration of underserved communities when designing the world around us, and she believes that choosing a career in STEM is a great way to make positive change.

    Mei-Li is excited to return to the area and talk to science teachers about her experience working on the James Webb Space Telescope in her presentation: Into the Unknown: NASA's James Webb Space Telescope

  • Nico Carver

    Star Trails by Nico Carver

    Nico Carver

    Librarian and YouTube Personality

    Nico is a librarian at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) by day and a dedicated astrophotographer and YouTuber by night. At the CfA, Nico is the lead on a program that partners with public library communities to build and operate satellite ground stations. He works with these libraries to develop STEM activities using low-cost space technology.

    His current passion outside of work is helping beginners get started with astrophotography through detailed videos on his YouTube channel. Nico wants to help anyone with an interest get started taking photos of the night sky, and enjoys figuring out very low-cost approaches including smartphone astrophotography. Nebula Photos, is one of the top astrophotography channels on YouTube and has almost 12 million views and almost 150,000 subscribers.

    Nico will be giving a 2 hour workshop on "Capturing Star Trails with a Smartphone". This will be limited to 25 attendees with pre-registration required.

    He will also be giving a presentation titled "What is astrophotography and why does it matter?" The session will discuss the history of astrophotography, its importance to our modern understandings of the universe, and introduce the audience to the current state of amateur astrophotography including resources to help students get started.

  • Dr. Carol K. Baker

    NGSS Writer, ISA Cohort Leader, and NGSS-Aligned Curr. & Asmt. Consultant

    Dr. Carol Baker was one of forty-one individuals chosen nationwide to be a member of the writing team for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Carol conducts large-scale workshops for K-12 teachers and administrators about NGSS and has presents at conferences around the country. She currently works with schools and districts on NGSS-aligned curriculum, lessons, and assessments.

    She worked closely with the Illinois State Board of Education to adopt the standards and support the implementation of NGSS in schools across Illinois. In 2019 she was asked to be part of the new Illinois Science Assessment Leadership Team. Beginning in 2020, she began working with Lewis University to lead a team of 42 educators to write questions for the new Illinois Science Assessment (ISA). The ISA is given yearly to students in Illinois public schools in the 5th, 8th, and 11th grades.

    Carol worked with Pearson on the creation of a science textbook series called Elevate Science, serving as the lead consultant for the project. The series is now owned by Savvas Learning Company. Prior to this, she was filmed by McGraw Hill for a series of brief instructional videos about NGSS; these videos are available for viewing on McGraw Hill’s website.

    She will be presenting NGSS Refresh for experienced teachers who would like a quick review of NGSS. This will be a fast-paced, jam-packed presentation! She will also be presenting with Dr. Lauren Rentfro on What's a Cluster: The Illinois Science Assessment (ISA).

More Info

  • Conference Details

    For more information on the NISE 2022 Conference, visit our conference information page. [more]