Susan is serving as a project advisor through Quarks to Clusters Consulting and the International Planetarium Society and she sees this as another opportunity to promote strong ties between planetariums, scientists, educators and students of all ages.
Her background, as a classroom teacher for 11 years and then as an outreach portable planetarium educator from a Science Center for 16 years, gives her an in depth understanding of STEM education from the perspective of the needs of students, teachers, and planetarians.
As the International Planetarium Society’s (IPS) Portable Planetarium Committee chair, since 1988, she has been a champion of small and portable planetariums and is intimately aware of their concerns and needs. She is the founder of “Powerful Interactive Planetarium Systems” (PIPS) professional development meetings in the USA and co-founder of European Meetings for Small and Portable Planetariums.
As associate editor for the “Planetarian,” the IPS quarterly journal, she has written a column for mobile and small planetarium directors since 1990. She wrote and edited, in collaboration with other portable planetarium directors, two planetarium handbooks for the IPS and one for the Great Lakes Planetarium Association (GLPA). She is a member of the education committees of the IPS and the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society (MAPS).
She gained a broad perspective concerning all aspects of large and small planetariums, their directors and diverse audiences while serving on the Executive Council of the IPS and as IPS President (2005-2008).
Her business, “Quarks to Clusters,” has provided teacher training and assistance to planetarium educators involved in lesson and curriculum development in a number of states in the USA and in 15 countries around the world.