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Breakout Session Speakers

From Word Outline to Powerpoint
Hour of Code

Tyson McMillan, Ph.D.

Chair, Computer Science and Information Technology
Professor of Computer Science, Department of Computer Science and Information Technology
Tarrant County College-Trinity River Campus

For Tyson DeShaun McMillan, education, teaching, and learning have always been essential components of his life. He started doctoral studies at the University of North Texas (UNT) in August 2007, and completed a Ph.D. in Information Science at UNT in July 2013. McMillan is a founding faculty member of the Tarrant County College Trinity River Campus in downtown Fort Worth, Texas. There, McMillan proudly serves as a tenured Professor of Computer Science, Department Chair of Computer Science & Information Technology, Coordinator of the Library Technology Program, and faculty advisor. In addition, McMillan has served as President-elect of the Trinity River Campus Faculty Association and Chair of the district Faculty Association.

Applying Math in the Real World (Data Science)

Keith Emmert, Ph.D

Associate Professor of Mathematics, Department of Mathematics
Tarleton State University

Keith Emmert’s non-traditional path to teaching began as a tutor in various subjects, including calculus, during his five years working in the Air Force. During this time, he established the first high school tutoring program in Guam. In 2004, after earning his Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from Texas Tech University, he started teaching at Tarleton State University where he still serves as an Associate Professor of Mathematics.

While knowledgeable in a vast array of mathematical sub-disciplines, his specialty is in biomathematics, focusing on the marriage between biology and mathematical models. To date, he has published several papers in biomathematics. His current interests include biomathematics, bioinformatics, data science, the history of mathematics, and mathematics education.

Oxford Nanoport DNA Sequencing Applications in Forensics

Roxanne Zascavage, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
University of Texas at Arlington

Roxanne Zascavage focuses on teaching and researching forensic science. She received her Master of Science Degree in Forensic and Investigative Genetics, and her Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences with a concentration in Molecular and Medical Genetics both from the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC). Her research focuses on novel DNA sequencing technologies, and she continues to collaborate with UNTHSC to develop standards for incorporating new technologies into forensic settings for human and microbial identification.

The Importance of Undergraduate Research

Christopher Higgens, Ph.D.

Director, Timberlake Biological Field Station
Associate Professor, Department of Biological Sciences
Tarleton State University

Christopher L. Higgins teaches upper-level courses in Ecology, Ichthyology, and Tropical Ecology as well as graduate-level courses in Measuring Biological Diversity and Research Design and Analysis. His research focuses primarily on identifying broad-scale patterns of abundance, distribution, and diversity and elucidating the underlying factors that give rise to those patterns. Higgins is currently PI of Tarleton’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates program sponsored by the National Science Foundation; the objective of this program is to provide research experiences for underrepresented students from 2-year colleges and 4-year universities with limited research opportunities.

Opportunities in Chemistry, Physics and Geoscience Research

Arthur A. Low, Ph.D.

Associate Dean, College of Science and Technology
Tarleton State University

Arthur A. Low earned his doctorate degree in Chemistry from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook in 1987. Having published in a number of professional publications and journals, he has also given numerous presentations of his research at conferences for the American Chemical Society. He began his career as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Tarleton State University in 1990, eventually rising through the ranks to Department Head of the Department of Chemistry, Geosciences, and Physics in 2012. In the fall of 2016, he assumed his current position as Associate Dean of the College of Science and Technology.

Today’s Learning Technology Tools and How to become Workforce Ready

Pearson Education

Staci Soriano
Content and Technology Consultant - Professional and Career Division in North Texas
Stacy is a University of North Texas graduate and received her Associate of Arts from Tarrant County College.

Leslie Mitchell
District Manager for Higher Education in the Math and Science Division
Leslie Mitchell is a Texas Tech University graduate and has been with Pearson Education for 8 years.

Jacquelyn Gaines
Learning Technology Specialist
Jacquelyn Gaines is a Fort Worth-based Learning Technology Specialist for Pearson Education specializing in Math and Science.

Gina (Fox) Turnage
Math and Stats Solutions Specialist
Gina Turnage is a Math and Stats Solutions Specialist covering the state of Texas. She is a University of North Texas graduate and has been with Pearson Education for 11 years.

Production and Distribution of Water from Stream to Tap

Fort Worth Water Department

Chris Harder, P.E.
Assistant Director for Engineering and Regulatory Compliance at the Fort Worth Water Department

David Hinshaw
Assistant Superintendent and Plant manager at the Eagle Mountain Drinking Water Treatment Plant

Ginger Laird
Water Reclamation Division of the Fort Worth Water Department

Stacy Walters
Regulatory and Environmental Administrator for the Fort Worth Water Department

Business Insights Panel

Al Dias, Actor/Entrepreneur

Al Dias is the Vice President of Consulting for a Global Commercial Collection firm with experience dealing with Fortune 500’s to start-ups. Al has also been involved with the entertainment industry for over 25 years. Launching his career in the music industry as an independent record label owner/producer in the mid-1990’s led to his introduction to television and film. Certified with distinction for entrepreneurship and small business management and an alumnus of Tarrant County College, Al plans to continue expanding his portfolio of global business, as well as his pursuits as an executive producer/producer/writer.

Kelly Kemp, Banking

Kelly Kemp is the Regional Director with the Southwest Regional Office of Export-Import Bank of the United States. Serving as its ‘’North Texas Branch’’, Kelly’s current territorial responsibilities include North, West, East Texas, the Texas Panhandle, Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. Kelly is a 1981 graduate of Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas.

Mark J. Stevens, Hotelier

Mark Stevens attended Michigan State University as a Forest Akers Scholar, earning a multi-disciplinary social science degree in International Economics and Political Science. Additionally, Mark pursued a Masters of International Management from the American Graduate School of International Management located in Glendale, Arizona. Mark’s career in “hospitality” began as a financial auditor with Marriott Hotels and Resorts International but quickly moved in to the sales discipline. Mark has worked for
Marriott, Omni, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Interstate Hotels & Resorts, and several individual hotel owners. Currently, he serves as the Director of Sales & Marketing at the Radisson Fort Worth at Fossil Creek.

Josie Orosco, Chamber of Commerce

Josie F. Orosco is the Executive Director of the United States Mexico Chamber of Commerce, Southwest Chapter in Dallas, Texas. Her mission is international economic development with the United States, Mexico and China, as well as match-making with businesses and countries. Josie put together an H2A Visa Agricultural Team and Delegation for the United States and Mexico, which was able to acquire over 1500 legal farm workers from Mexico. Her work experience includes being the first Latina woman in management in Dallas at Xerox, Kraft Phillip Morris, and US Foodservice, with each company being valued over $25 billion nationwide.

Updated October 05, 2017