As the Assistant Director for Science Education for the Rice Office of STEM Engagement (R-STEM), Mariana provides growth opportunities for science educators in Houston and surrounding areas. Through programs including the ConocoPhillips Applied Mathematics Program (AMP!), Nanotechnology Environmental Engineering for Teachers (NEET), and NEWT Research Experience for Teachers (RET), Mariana immerses educators in inquiry, project-based, and culturally sustaining professional developments where teachers can enhance their pedagogy skills.
Prior to joining the RSTEM team, Mariana served as an interventionist assistant in Elementary for Alief ISD, helping at risk students improve both their reading and math skills. For Spring ISD & Katy ISD, Mariana served as a secondary science teacher, teaching and developing curriculum for subjects including Physics, Principles of Technology, Advanced Biotechnology, AP Biology, and Forensic Science.
Mariana currently holds a B.S. in Biology and minor in Chemistry from Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, TX, and a M.S. in Environmental Toxicology from Texas Southern University, Houston, TX where she did research on the impact of microplastics in Galveston Island and its surrounding areas.