The Researchers at the Intersection of Science and Education (RISE) is a community of PhDs and PhD candidates who are actively pursuing or would like to pursue careers in Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) education, education research, science outreach and communication at all educational levels. By establishing a professional network of experts at the intersection of science and education, RISE seeks to foster a community of like-minded individuals to support career-track and professional development. In addition to providing a platform for STEM educators, RISE seeks to maximize the impact of scientist educators to advance scientific literacy and the use of evidence-based educational research in the classroom and to inspire both current and future scientists to communicate their science to the public.
There are a growing number of talented scientist educators who could benefit from connecting with each other and sharing career advancement opportunities that an organization like RISE could provide. These scientists fulfill diverse roles — including those of high-school teacher, museum curator, K-12 outreach project manager, or primary investigator performing science education research — and because of the lack of current opportunities to find and meet each other, they rarely communicate except by chance at conferences devoted specifically to science or education or through personal networks. RISE aims to create and formalize professional conduits by which these interdisciplinary scientists can exchange expertise and resources, and support each other in addressing a pressing need to improve STEM education at all levels. Our society can no longer afford to draw a distinction between practitioners of science and of education: we need to harness the power of highly-qualified PhDs who have mastered multiple disciplines and chosen to focus their efforts at the intersection of science and education. In response, members of the HHMI Education Group at MIT and the Center for Translational Science Education (CTSE) at Tufts University School of Medicine, together with colleagues from Brandeis University and from the Harvard Medical School Curriculum Fellows Program seek to join forces to create this organization.