Summer STEM Education Faculty | Edge on Science

Summer fun for budding scientists and engineers!

A project based, fun approach to applied science and engineering with summer programs held at prestigious colleges and universities.

Or choose custom programs for your school, museum, library, youth group or community.

• work in teams, building individual & group projects •

• use tools, drawings, computer applications & scientific instruments •

• child to instructor & assistant ratio of 6:1 or less •

• lead instructors are engineers, scientists or scholars •

• Outdoor games & challenges add to the fun! •

John Aviste, P. Eng.
BS Civil Engineering, University of Toronto

John is one of the lead instructors this summer. His youth programs have been held at university campuses, libraries, schools and museums. Thousands of students have participated. John has a background in civil engineering.

Accomplishments include:
• solving the challenge of using less plastic, in hot-filled beverage bottles
• engineering and prototyping a tamper-proof, temperature sensing device
• researching ways to reduce spoilage in silage, used to feed dairy cattle
• producing the Tree City USA instructional video & manual

Summer 2022 Instructors

James Babcock

James Babcock
Engineering major at Endicott College

James is an aspiring engineer whose passion leads him to explore, experiment, and experience science firsthand. His experience includes working with youth.

Greg Dancer

BS Civil Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
BS Literature, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MA Film Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Greg returns this summer to lead the Super Science Sampler and the Summer Rocket Blast Off. He is known for his kindness and ability to connect with children.

Megan DeSanty STEM Instructor

Megan DeSanty
Majoring in Robotics Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Megan is a passionate engineer who has hands on experience with designing, implementing, and testing various robot mechanisms. As a robotics engineering student, she collaborates with others to design the most suitable robot for a given challenge. 

Outside of engineering, she loves to work with kids, introducing them to engineering through model building activities. Last summer she worked as a sports camp counselor.

Megan is also on the varsity cross country and track teams at WPI and is actively participating in a nationwide community service fellowship that address the root causes of food insecurity!

Nare Parseghian STEM Instructor

Nare Parseghian
Pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering
UMass Amherst Commonwealth Honors College (GPA 3.97)

Nare was awarded the Jack Welch Scholarship by UMass Amherst, a full-ride engineering scholarship for academically accomplished students. She started college with a sophomore standing. She received a certificate from UMass Amhersts’ Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society for being in the top ten percent of the sophomore class academically at the university.

Nare is a tutor and described as kind, patient and very good at connecting with children. As an accomplished pianist she has designed and conducted music theory lessons for groups of children.

Addy Krom STEM Edge on Science Instructor

Addy Krom
Majoring in computer science at Case Western Reserve University (GPA: 3.77)

From coaching 12 year olds in ski racing to serving as a co-president, leading youth at an MIT climate summit, we can only imagine what Addy will bring to Drone & Code this summer.

Addy’s Boston Latin School Faculty Advisor, Cate Arnold has described them as dedicated, reliable, skilled and passionate. Take for example, their work on developing a floor tile that captures the energy imparted by walking on it. Consider the applications of this!

Experienced in Python coding, your child can expect some wicked cool flight challenges from Addy. Think object recognition, obstacle courses, payload lifts and more!

Lindsay Hirt marine biologist

Lindsay Hirt
M.S. Emergency Management, Summa Cum Laude at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy (MMA)
B.A. Biology, Magna Cum Laude at the University of Maine at Machias (UMM)

Lindsay Hirt, a native New Englander, loves her salty community so much that she has shaped her life and passions around the ocean. With over fifteen years experience in the field and a strong background in the natural and biological sciences paired with a Master’s Degree in Emergency Management, Lindsay is well equipped to demonstrate and facilitate discovery in the sciences for others. As a marine biologist and science educator, Lindsay splits her time between the “field” and the classroom.

Working with whale watch companies in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, Lindsay keeps her thumb on the pulse of what’s happening with sensitive marine life populations like sea turtles, North Atlantic right whales, and seals. She guides the public on whale watch cruises every day, all summer long!

In an effort to monitor and protect these creatures in their natural environment, Lindsay acts as a first responder to marine wildlife in trouble and teaches others how to safely coexist with them. She works collaboratively alongside environmental conservation organizations, such as International Fund for Animal Welfare, the Healthy Oceans Coalition, and the New England Aquarium. This means wearing multiple hats, so-to-speak, thanks to a background in marine biology, veterinary medicine, and emergency management! On any given day it might mean photographing animals to track their identity and behavior, helping research interns collect data, presenting information at a conference, teaching a children’s naturalist program, informing policymakers, or designing curriculum for students at all age levels. Join her on an adventure and learn some cool things while having fun!


Anna Nelson

Biotechnology & Molecular Bioscience major at the Rochester Institute of Technology

Anna has five plus years experience in leading and preparing STEM focused youth activities. She is described as a deep thinker. Her curiosity for all things will delight and engage your child.

And no, that is not Anna Nelson, but Rosalind Franklin who advanced the technique of x-ray diffraction becoming the first to image the helical nature of DNA. Like Rosalind, Anna is dedicated to getting good data. Good data yields good science!

Karoline Sucic marine scientist

Karoline Sucic

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (GPA 3.75)

Karoline has assisted with the collection of whale snot. Yup, whale snot. This is done by flying a drone through the blow of a whale. It is called the Snotbot and  was originally developed at Olin College of Engineering. At Endicott College she completed her thesis research project under Professor Gordon Ober. He has commended her on extraordinary attention to detail and a rigorous approach to obtaining good data. In addition to extensive research experience, Karoline has served as a naturalist for Seven Seas Whale Watch in Gloucester MA.

Notable skills include:
• educating children
• sharing her knowledge of sustainability, ecology and marine science
• working on boats
• professional wildlife illustration

Past Instructors

Molly Crown STEM Drone Instructor

Molly Crown
Graduating in Computer Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Molly will not be returning this summer to lead Drone & Code, as she will be pursuing full time employment. We wish her success in all her future endeavors! She has contributed much to the Drone & Code curriculum and now passes it on to our new Instructor, Tariq Georges, a computer engineering major at Boston University.

Tariq Georges
Majoring in Computer Engineering, Boston University

Tariq is no stranger when it comes to electronics and computer technology. He is adapting the curriculum for Drone & Code from computer science graduate, Molly Crown. One of the new challenges will involve object recognition. Tariq’s experience in working with youth will figure into his approach with scratch programming for the younger children and python text coding for the older children!

Isabelle Nguyen

Biomedical Engineering at Boston University with a 3.78 GPA

Isabelle has considerable experience in computer aided design (CAD) while on a FIRST robotics team and more recently on a Formula SAE electric car team. Combine that with her experience as a youth swim coach and you have the makings of a fun, deep dive into 3D Printing & Design or Catapult Engineering!

Isabelle is a member and active participant in the Boston University, Society of Women Engineers.

Tyler VanHelene

Tyler VanHelene
Studying mechanical engineering at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst

From 2018 to 2020, Tyler assisted with Edge on Science summer programs, notably Drone & Code, Catapult Engineering and the Summer Rocket Blast Off. He has a wide variety of achievements and activities he dedicates his time to. While still in high school, he was the captain of his high school robotics team, continuing his study of black-belt in karate, sailing on his school’s varsity sailing team, and interning at the hematology and oncology lab at Boston University.

Tyler is pursuing an internship the summer of 2021 and we wish him all the best! He continues to contribute to the curriculum for 3D Printing & Design and will collaborate with Isabelle Nguyen.

Brett Zaorski

Brett Zaorski
Majoring in Biomedical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University

Brett loves summer camp! As a camper, the activities he loved best were the ones where he learned something new and were hands-on. For the past five summers, he’s worked as either a counselor-in-training or a lead counselor, working with children aged five to 16. 

At Case Western, Brett works in the university’s innovation center, supervising activities on the fabrication floor. He also enjoys building sets for theatre performances and playing with the marching band on the drumline.

Brett was an Edge on Science Instructor in the summer of 2020 and helped to blaze a trail for conducting safe in-person programs. Now he gets ready to pass the torch, so to speak, to Greg Dancer and Rebecca FitzGerald. We wish Brett success as he pursues an internship this summer!