Dr. Hettinger is an Idaho native with teaching credentials in Elementary Education (K-8 All Subjects), Secondary Education (6-12: Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Physical Sciences, Natural Sciences, and Standard Mathematics), and Administration (K-12). She has 15 years of public school teaching experience and has taught all levels K-16.
Dr. Hettinger holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Zoology and Secondary Education from the University of Idaho. She holds Master degrees in Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Leadership and a Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction focused on STEM Leadership from Boise State University. Her dissertation was a statewide study that evaluated the quality of science instruction in high achieving low and high socioeconomic elementary schools in Idaho. The title of her dissertation was, Finding Success in Elementary Science across Socioeconomic Boundaries.
Dr. Hettinger played various leadership roles at North Star Charter School (K-12) for 11 years, including leading their K-12 school accreditation, assisting with administrative duties, directing large programs, and chairing their large K-12 science program. Additionally, she was a founding teacher and a Harbor School mentor teacher. Dr. Hettinger completed her administration internship at ANSER Charter School (K-8) and St. Joseph’s Catholic School (K-8). Dr. Hettinger is a member of the Idaho STEM Leadership Cohort and was part of the Idaho STEM School Designation Committee last year. She is a member of the AdvancEd STEM School Certification committee. She enjoys helping teachers build confidence and self-reliance in developing and implementing engaging core and STEM instruction. Dr. Hettinger has an expansive background in curriculum across ALL content areas and grade-levels. Dr. Hettinger considers herself a STEMinologist, one who studies and implements best practices for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education. In the classroom, she has engaged her students in real-world application of science and opened their eyes to the world of opportunity that awaits them. She directed the Student Spaceflight Experiment Project (SSEP) at her last school, where over 500 students in grades 5-12 participated in developing microgravity research proposals. One team of 5th-grade students were selected to send their experiment to the International Space Station. She engaged her students each year in growing trout from eggs through Trout in the Classroom. While Dr. Hettinger was at Boise State University, she developed and taught a course titled Investigations into Sustainable Development in which she engaged students from biology, geosciences, and environmental Studies in service-learning enhanced instruction. Her work in this class was featured in the book, The ACTivist Learner: Inquiry and Service Learning to Make Learning Matter.
Dr. Hettinger enjoys immersing herself in STEM experiences. One of these opportunities included flying in microgravity onboard NASA’s microgravity plane to collect data on the movement of cerebral spinal fluid in humans with Boise State University students majoring in Biology, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Computer Science. In summer 2017, she worked with Washington State University paleontologists and graduate students at the DIG Field School where they were in the process of unearthing Tyrannosaurus Rex, Triceratops, and Duckbill dinosaurs. This past summer, she spent time at the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research learning about the technology their research scientists are using to save endangered species all over the world, including the California Condor, African Elephant, Polar Bear, Desert Tortoise, and White Rhinoceros. While in graduate school Jill worked with raptor biologists and graduate students from the Idaho Bird Observatory to capture and release raptors in an effort to gather information on their health and migration patterns. Over the years, Dr. Hettinger has also had the opportunity to work in the field of informal education within zoological parks, such as Zoo Boise, and coaching and assisting with several Lego League and Jr. Lego League programs.
Dr. Hettinger and her husband, Rob, have two sons, ages 11 and 14. They also share their home with two long-haired Weimaraners. As a family, they enjoy skiing, rock climbing, horseback riding, camping, and traveling. Dr. Hettinger has an adventurous spirit and loves to travel to places to expand her knowledge. She has been to the rainforests of Costa Rica and the savannas of South Africa. She enjoys expanding and sharing her passion for STEM with others. She is excited to be a part of Project Impact STEM Academy.
Mrs. Prillaman has her Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Science from California Polytechnic State University and her Master of Education in Educational Leadership from the University of Idaho. She is a graduate of the Professional Technical Education Leadership Institute and served as an Attendance Dean at Columbia High School in Nampa from 2013 to 2016.
Mrs. Prillaman grew up in the mountains of California riding horses on a Christmas tree farm. She has always loved the outdoors and animals. Her favorite place is sitting on a stump at Bull Trout Lake taking in the view. She loves hiking, camping, biking, swimming, paddle boarding, and riding horses. She grew up on a ranch where working and playing hard was the only way to live life. She loves balancing life with new experiences and challenges. Her passion for traveling has taken her all around Idaho, the United States, and the world.
Mrs. Prillaman loves helping people find meaning in what they are doing and teaching others how to make their life easier. She was first introduced to her passion for technology 22 years ago, and has spent the last 22 years working in technology, learning, and growing.
Mrs. Prillaman loves country music and classic rock music, she enjoys action movies. She considers herself one of the original 80's Star Wars fans.
She lives in the country with her family, three horses, and one dog.
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