Christine Nobbe continues to inspire students in the STEM field
May 9, 2017
Since the publishing of “Christine Nobbe receives Inspiring Teacher Award, encourages STEM involvement,” describing the Challenger Award Nobbe won earlier this year, Nobbe has already received a wave of positive feedback from the article. One in particular stands out: a Facebook comment from the mother of two of Nobbe’s former elementary school students detailing how both students have since gone into STEM fields and are grateful for Nobbe’s encouragement to pursue that field of study.
When she first saw the comment on her Facebook post, Nobbe’s “heart went thump-thump and [she] thought, ‘Thank goodness, it’s working!’” By “it,” she means her early introduction of STEM to students using motivating topics and hands-on projects. “I’m glad I helped girls find a passion in the STEM fields where there are interesting, challenging, and exciting careers,” expresses Nobbe. In this instance, Nobbe can clearly see where her influence has reached her students.
Inspiring students means a lot and is very important to Nobbe, who says she “spent a lot of time at school planning lessons, creating special projects for students, and collaborating with teachers, parents, and the community,” when she was a full-time teacher, even sometimes at the expense of her own family life and personal life. “I’m glad my efforts made a difference,” Nobbe reflects.
As for what comes next for Nobbe, she’s not quite sure. Because of her passion for space, she had dreamed of working for a space company, such as SpaceX, in their outreach department. However, because most of these companies are on the West Coast, that hasn’t happened yet. In addition to doing a lot of outreach at the Science Center, county libraries, and in Rockwood schools, Nobbe is currently planning the International Space Development Conference which will be held in St. Louis during Memorial Day weekend. Although this is far from the end of what she hopes to achieve for St. Louis, some of her long-term goals include bringing a Spaceport to St. Louis, and bringing the International Space University summer program to Parks College-SLU or Washington University.
Because of her connections in the Space Exploration community, Nobbe “was able to get GCAA a ‘flown in space’ experiment,” in which students in Mr. Goodin’s class designed experiments that will be flown into space. “Now that we ‘have our wings,’ maybe we can do a more extensive experiment where we fly more complex experiments in space,” Nobbe said.