Thomas ‘TJ’ McKenna didn’t ask to be called ‘The Science Guy,’ but it happened anyway.

McKenna, a graduate student at the University of Connecticut studying science education, is a staff scientist at the Connecticut Science Center. His resume includes a masters in entomology, running a widely-read science blog, being cited as a co-author in a study on squirrel behavior, hosting two weekly science shows and, most recently, moderating a question and answer session for the Mythbusters.

McKenna’s main focus is currently on the Next Generation Science Standards, a set of teaching standards that help teach students about topics in the field of STEM.

“The way we learn science in classrooms now is very different from what we need to compete on an international level,” McKenna said. “We need to shift the way science is done.”

One of the ways McKenna encourages STEM involvement is through his blog, Phenomena for NGSS. The site features various articles, videos and gifs of different questions and topics in the field of science, such as bicycle aerodynamics and deer migration. The point of these topics, McKenna said, for teachers to use them to get students to ask questions.

Click here to read the full story in The Daily Campus (UConn, November 8, 2016)

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