About the Team
We are a team of educational researchers, developers, designers, writers and teachers, brought together by a passion for education. Each of our team leads has over 20 years experience in the education, animation and game industries.
Program Director Valerie Mih has been teaching STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math) classes and creating educational materials for students of all ages for over 15 years. She holds an MFA in Film, Video & Computer Animation from the University of Southern California, with a focus on 3D animation. After working in the entertainment industry (including animating on the films "A Bugs Life" and "Toy Story II"), she discovered a passion for educational media and curriculum development. Since the mid-2000's, she has served as a full-time educator and educational content developer. In the past 4 years, her focus has been on developing materials and curriculum introducing quantum physics to kids and teens. Valerie is also a professor of animation technology at California College of the Arts in the San Francisco Bay Area. Previously, she earned a Bachelors of Arts in American Studies from Stanford University, with a focus on the study of culture, race and ethnicity in the United States.
Education Professor Dr. Alexis Lauricella serves as the director of the Erikson Institute's Technology in Early Childhood (TEC) Center, where she studies the intersecting fields of digital media and early childhood. Her research has been frequently published in academic journals and books, and she is a regular presenter at conferences in the United States and abroad. Among her research findings has been an understanding of how children learn through using technology and the role adults play in supporting that learning.
Art Director Glenn Kim has been a professional Art Director and Animation Designer for over twenty years. He served as an artist at Pixar Animation Studios for 14 years, designing environments, characters, layouts and shaders for the films “A Bug’s Life,” “Toy Story 2,” “Monsters Inc,” “Finding Nemo,” “The Incredibles,” “Cars,” “WALL-E,” “Toy Story 3,” and “Cars 2.” He has Art Directed at leading game companies Zynga and FunPlus, creating the look and feel for top-ranked interactive products. The father of 2 school-age daughters, he is excited to design educational products that make science and technology accessible to more kids and teens.
Kaitlyn Choe, Instructor
Kaitlyn Choe is a Stanford undergraduate majoring in Human Biology with a minor in Creative Writing. She's been excited about quantum physics ever since she watched the "They Might Be Giants: Here Comes Science" DVD, which her mom borrowed from the library for her when she was in fourth grade. She is incredibly grateful for all of the science teachers who cultivated this curiosity and is excited to do the same for her learners! Kaitlyn enjoys using a storytelling approach to STEM and embraces creative, holistic learning where all styles are encouraged. In addition to Quantum Physics for Kids, Kaitlyn was a counselor for elementary school students at Stanford Sierra Camp.
Kara Herson, Instructor
Kara is a rising senior studying Engineering Physics at Stanford University. From a young age she’s always been excited to explore the world of science in her classes at school and by visiting local science museums. Her interest in physics took off in high school, where she fell in love with the framework physics provides for understanding how the world works. She recognizes that physics is an intimidating field of study, and strives to make it a more accessible subject through her teaching style. She has previously mentored students at the I Have A Dream Foundation in Colorado and at various science-focused organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Winnie Huang, Instructor
Winnie is a Stanford undergraduate majoring in Chemical Engineering, with a minor in International Relations. Her enthusiasm for quantum physics took shape in fifth grade and was amplified throughout middle and high school as her teachers nurtured her curiosity of the behavior and processes of the world. In reflection of her own path into STEM, Winnie aims to engage school-age children with scientific concepts and instill upon them the same curiosity and excitement she experiences. In addition to teaching school-age children through Quantum Physics for Kids, she has served as a tutor for elementary, high school and college students in the areas of Science, Math, and written communication.
Brandon Russell, Instructor
Brandon studied Environmental Science at the University of California in Santa Cruz, and 3D Media Production at Berkeley City College. In addition to studying physics in college and working with physics simulation as a 3D artist and game developer, he is a physics enthusiast who regularly reads, attends lectures, and listens to podcasts on the subject of quantum mechanics. Brandon's background in computer graphics and game development shape his approach to teaching towards a project-based, interactive, STEM-focused curriculum that rewards creative and holistic thinking. In addition to teaching school-age children through Quantum Physics for Kids, he has taught youth as a science camp counselor and coding instructor at community-based organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Sunny Satpathy, Instructor and Educational Media Developer
Sunny holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Animation, with a minor in Writing and Literature, from California College of the Arts. Her passion for quantum physics stems from a strong emphasis on science in her high school curriculum (particularly AP-level Chemistry, Physics and Calculus) and a natural curiosity for anything physics-related. With her animation degree she aims to create educational media that illustrates scientific concepts and makes them easy for everyone to understand. In addition to teaching school-age children with Quantum Physics for Kids, Sunny has served as a tutor for high school and college students in the areas of Science, Math, Writing, Art History and Animation.
Celia Tandon, Instructor
Celia Tandon is a Stanford undergraduate majoring in Physics with minors in Computer Science and Mathematics. Her fascination with quantum physics stems from her natural curiosity about the universe at a young age, which was fueled by numerous YouTubers and books. Celia hopes to foster a creative, curiosity-driven environment for her students to instill a similar enthusiasm for STEM. After graduating, she plans to obtain a PhD in astrophysics and pursue black hole research in academia. In addition to Quantum Physics for Kids, Celia tutors middle and high school students in Computer Science and Math.