Dr. Parvin Kassaie, former director of the Center for Experiential Education and Service Learning at the University of California, Los Angeles, has been named manager of the Educational Affairs Office at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
As manager, Kassaie's responsibilities will span a wide range of JPL's educational activities designed to increase students' interest in math and science. She will oversee JPL's Educator Resource Center, the Learning Technologies program, programs for kindergarten-through-college students and minority science and engineering initiatives.
"I'm very excited to join JPL," said Kassaie. "There are great resources here, in terms of knowledge and people, and JPL has a great foundation of activities and efforts reaching out to the educational community." Kassaie said she looks forward to applying JPL's resources to reach NASA's goal of achieving excellence in education.
Kassaie hopes to establish more of an interaction between JPL and educational programs in the social sciences and humanities to encourage interdisciplinary education.
At UCLA, she collaborated with faculty members and departments across campus to develop curricula that would bring college students out into the community and promote hands-on learning. She has also served as an adviser to state legislators working on educational reform issues.
Kassaie received her bachelor's degree in urban studies from California State University, Northridge, and her master's and doctorate degrees in sociology from the University of Southern California.
JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
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