Brandy Todd, PhD
I am a researcher, educator, and administrator at the University of Oregon. I have spent the last 10 years developing and researching informal science outreach programs designed to increase gender diversity in STEM. Broadly, my research and teaching addresses gender disparities in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines.
Director of the Science Program to Inspire Creativity and Excellence - 2008- present.
Assistant director for administration of the Oregon Center for Optical, Molecular and Quantum Science - 2006-present
In the misty past, I was also coordinator for the University of Oregon Map & Aerial Photography collection where I managed one of the largest aerial photography collections in north american and ran the associated historical aerial photography research service.
I have received not one, not two, but three degrees from the University of Oregon, where I have been a full time staff member since 2000. I received a bachelor of science (manga cum laude) in Sociology and Political Science in 2001 with a special focus on equity and power.
In 2010, I completed a masters of public administration with a concentration in public policy and non-profit management. My master's thesis examined the incentives and results of a program providing one-time payouts for permanent partial disability claims. I concluded that windfall payments were more attractive to injured employees, though they may not be in the recipient's best interests.
I received my PhD in Educational Leadership from the Department of Educational, Methodology, Policy, and Leadership within the College of Education in 2015. My dissertation was a mixed-methods study of the science affinities and identities of girls participating in the SPICE program. Key findings included the conclusion that informal science education can be carried out with a high level of rigor and fidelity to underlying theoretical models, girls science affinities following the intervention are related to socioeconomic status, and girls exhibit unique identifiable emergent science identities. More about this study can be found on my research page.
I am a frequent invited speaker at events for educational and non-profit groups. I also direct the UO Science and Invention Fair and the UO Fall Science Open House. Both events are a great way to connect families, teachers, and STEM education groups.
In 2013, I was crowned SLUG Queen Professor Doctor Mildred Slugwak Dresselhaus (named in honor of the real Millie Dresselhaus). I ran on a platform of science education and bribed the Old SLUG Queens (as is tradition) with free public science demonstrations and science outreach workshops during the coronation. For the talent portion of the completion my Army of Girl Scientists presented Fire and Ice Cream, making liquid nitrogen ice cream and flambé slugs live on stage.
In my role as informal ambassador of the City of Eugene, Oregon I represent all that is great and slimy about our city. As an Old SLUG Queen (never former, once a queen always a queen) I am frequently called on to act as master of ceremonies for art, science, and education related events. I am a champion for local science education programs and groups such as SPICE, the Science Factory, and UO STEM CORE.