BIPOC Educational STEM Thinkers = B.E.S.T. Conference - PEBC

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Experience the B.E.S.T. Conference:

A Community of BIPOC Educators in STEM

June 29th-30th, 2024

June 29th-30th, 2024

8:30-3:30 each day

Denver Museum of Nature and Science

2001 Colorado Blvd, Denver, CO 80205

Conference Only: $500 Early Bird*/$550 General

Conference & Monthly Affinity Groups: $550 Early Bird*/$600 General

*Early Bird pricing ends May 29, 2024

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B.E.S.T.BIPOC Educational STEM Thinkers!

Empowering BIPOC STEM educators to create positive change in their communitites.

While students of color make up more than half of our student population nationwide, educators of color are fewer and farther between and experience unique stresses in our roles in schools. If you identify with this experience, this event is for you: we invite you to immerse yourself in a community of BIPOC STEM educators. Join us to explore opportunities for belonging, awareness, healing, and change. Across two days, we will connect and discuss our challenges as well as build strength and a sense of community that we can bring back to our schools.

After this two-day conference, we will then have monthly affinity group meetings that are tailored to participant capacity, needs, and collective goals. Groups may range from tackling policy and brainstorming instructional strategies, to simply having a safe space to be and show up authentically. Participants will have the influence and autonomy to guide this experience. 

Learn about our panelists:

Click on names to be directed to their LinkedIn pages

UnSuk Zucker

UnSuk Zucker

Partner | Promise54

Mehran Ahmed

Mehran Ahmed

Executive Director | AXL Academy

Ashley Huderson

Dr. Ashley Huderson

STEM & Equity Policy Advisor | U.S. Department of Education 

Gene Fashaw

Gene Fashaw

Eighth Grade Math Teacher | High Point Academy 

Maya Garcia

Maya Garcia

Chief Program Officer | Beyond100K 

What last year's participants said about the conference:

"It was refreshing to be in a learning environment with people that look like me. The knowledge I've gained along the way will contribute to improved outcomes for my students."

"It was a great time to bounce ideas off of like minded people and make some great connections throughout the field of education."

"The joy, connections, and sense of belonging experienced in this inaugural meeting help reinforce the impact and necessity of such a cohort. I left invigorated and prepared to show up as my authentic self in executive spaces and continue forging forward with building capacity for the next iteration of BIPOC leaders."

"A wonderful learning experience that build a community, and affirm my belief in myself in the teaching profession."

Want to learn more about last year's B.E.S.T. Conference? Click here!

Hotel Accommodations

Renaissance Denver Central Park
3801 Quebec St.
Denver, CO 80207

303-399-7500

Facilitators

Sathya Wandzek
PEBC Staff Developer & Beach Court Dean of Instruction

Sathya Wandzek has spent her career focusing on being a voice for all students, especially those of color through her love of math. Sathya received her bachelors in mathematics from CU Boulder but knew that her expertise would be used best in the classroom vs an office. As a person of color growing up in the “Boulder Bubble,” Sathya didn't see many teachers that looked like her. From a young age she was an outlier trying to fit in and find her place and she wanted to help other kids do the same.

After working for a summer at San Juan Del Centro in Boulder she knew that her passion was teaching, not just teaching, but teaching the underserved. She applied to the Public Education Business Coalition Teacher residency’s program in 2001 and was accepted into their first class receiving her Masters in Urban Education.

She taught for 10 years in Thornton Colorado supporting the development of a math curriculum for the district as well as becoming a Lab Host for other teachers to come and visit her class. She cultivated relationships through parent nights, home visits, and engaging math lessons that were meaningful to students.

After 10 years Sathya knew that she needed more, needed to grow and find a way to make more of a difference and so she joined the Public Education Business Coalition as a staff developer. For the last 9 years Sathya has traveled the country supporting teachers in best practice and helping them find the joy that comes with mathematical understanding and agency. From presenting institutes to developing PD in different states she saw a gap, again this hole in our education system when it comes to representation. Where were the teachers of color, and why were we not representing them?

Her goal for the last two years as a Dean of Instruction at Beach Court elementary in Denver Public School was to coach and launch PEBC’s first Bilingual Learning lab, and she did it! But this is just one classroom, she wants to see more teachers of color being represented in our schools. That is why she is so excited for this new adventure with Beyond 100K, a non-profit focused on sustainability of BIPOC STEM Educators.

As a person of color who lacked representation in her own life she knows the importance for students to see themselves in school, and in life. That is why she is passionate about supporting BIPOC (Black Indigenous People of Color)  educators in staying in the classroom and learning how to navigate a dominantly white system. She is excited to Launch the BEST (BIPOC Educational STEM Thinkers) conference this Summer in Denver Colorado. This conference is a place for Belonging, Awareness, Healing, and Change, all things Sathya is hoping to accomplish in her career and life.

Jailyn Jenkins
PEBC Manager of Resident Development, Innovation & Coaching

Jailyn Jenkins has built her career on a foundation of belonging, equity, joy, and the daily adventures of learning, striving to instill a passion for science, especially among students of color. Inspired by curiosity, nature, and exploration, her dedication focuses on cultivating joyful learning experiences and authentic visibility in the STEM field. Growing up, she navigated diverse spaces and actively carved out room for advocacy and representation in areas where they were scarce and undervalued.

Facing Arizona's early teacher shortage, Jailyn started her teaching career before officially earning her STEM Education degree from Arizona State University. After a few years of teaching in Phoenix, she returned to her hometown of Denver, to teach and complete her Masters in Education Administration at Grand Canyon University. She then ventured into spaces that allowed her to influence and enhance equity-centered communities. Becoming a lab host provided her with another platform for advocacy, complementing her roles as a science instructional coach, staff developer, district facilitator, and public speaker.

After more than a decade of dedicated service, Jailyn identified a need to explore and expand into an organization committed to enhancing education systems and student access comprehensively. Joining the team at the Public Education and Business Coalition, she currently serves as the Manager of Resident Development, Innovation, and Coaching. Jailyn also is the co-founder of the fruitful BEST (BIPOC Educational STEM Thinkers) Conference and affinity groups, an initiative rooted in connecting, supporting, and sustaining educators, both locally and nationally, because like Marian Wright Edelman once said, "it's hard to be what you can't see."

Sponsored by

Interested in sponsoring this event? Click HERE or contact Jailyn Jenkins at [email protected]

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Tickets

The numbers below include tickets for this event already in your cart. Clicking "Get Tickets" will allow you to edit any existing attendee information as well as change ticket quantities.
Early Bird - 2 Day BEST Conference Only
INCLUDES: General Admission, BEST Bag & Goodies, Snack & Lunch (Both Days), Happy Hour Entry, Exclusive Access to the Museum, Exclusive Access to the Denver Zoo, 15 Professional Development Hours, 2 Additional Raffle Ticket Entries
$ 500.00
Unlimited
Early Bird - 2 Day BEST Conference and Affinity Groups
INCLUDES: General Admission, BEST Bag & Goodies, Snack & Lunch (Both Days), Happy Hour Entry, Exclusive Access to the Museum, Exclusive Access to the Denver Zoo, 40 Professional Development Hours, 4 Additional Raffle Ticket Entries
$ 550.00
Unlimited
*COMP* 2 Day BEST Conference Only
INCLUDES: General Admission, BEST Bag & Goodies, Snack & Lunch (Both Days), Happy Hour Entry, Exclusive Access to the Museum, Exclusive Access to the Denver Zoo, 15 Professional Development Hours, 2 Additional Raffle Ticket Entries
$ 0.00
Unlimited
*COMP* 2 Day BEST Conference and Affinity Groups
INCLUDES: General Admission, BEST Bag & Goodies, Snack & Lunch (Both Days), Happy Hour Entry, Exclusive Access to the Museum, Exclusive Access to the Denver Zoo, 40 Professional Development Hours
$ 0.00
Unlimited