Teaching experience

This page lists some of my teaching experience and participation in educational activities. I find teaching and learning fascinating, and wish that I had the opportunity to take on more formal teaching roles (a nice problem to have as a PhD student, as it indicates that I have always been on well funded research projects). Where applicable, this page also links to further resources related to each activity.

Science Quiz Writer for Brilliant.org

I develop curriculum for Brilliant.org, a website offering interactive, online STEM education. I am currently working on content that explores renewable energy technologies: you can try some of the activities yourself by following this link. The chapters available now focus on solar energy (one of the chapters focuses on solar-thermal technologies - same as my PhD research), however they will hopefully be expanded to wind, geothermal, and other renewable energy technologies in the future.

TAing Graduate Heat Transfer

I was a teaching assistant (TA) for 2.55 at MIT during the Spring 2016 term. The official course title is "Advanced Heat and Mass Transfer" but colloquially it is the graduate level heat transfer survey class, covering conduction, convection, radiation, phase change, and mass transfer. My primary responsibilities as TA were to lead recitation sessions (for which I typically wrote original problems) and to host review sessions before exams. Teaching this course was also a more exciting opportunity than normal because the instructor team had no faculty members, so there was a good deal of learning happening on both sides of the classroom.

At some point I would like to post some of the recitation problems that I prepared for this class, but they are not ready to be posted here as is.

Mentoring for MITxplore

MITxplore is a math outreach program at MIT that was started by three of my friends and fellow grad students in 2012. It specifically seeks to encourage growth in ways separate from the traditional math curriculum in the US; MITxplore focuses on exploring interesting problems, emphasizing process over product, and nurturing a passion for math in the students. This is achieved through extended programs which consist of hour-long weekly sessions and all-day "Math Day" events, for which I've helped mentor students and develop lesson content.

Some of my favorite lessons that I've developed include:

A long term project for MITxplore is to document and organize our lesson plans to make them easy to share, so hopefully at some point I'll be able to link to the plans from here.

MIT K12 Videos

There is a program at MIT called K12 videos, that produces STEM outreach videos targeted at middle school students (they originally intended to produce videos for students from kindergarten through 12th grade, hence the "K12"). The videos from MIT K12 Videos are now professionally produced and very polished, but when it was first getting off the ground the videos were produced by the students and had a much more homemade feel. I made a few K12 videos along with some friends back before the professional producers got involved, which are available to view on YouTube:


The Square-Cube Law:

Harnessing Solar Energy:

Education Minor

One of the requirements for earning a PhD in mechanical engineering at MIT is to complete a minor, consisting of three courses in a subject that is separate from your primary research focus; I chose to minor in education. Three courses is nowhere near enough to make me an expert (especially since none of them involved any formal teaching practice), but it was still valuable in providing a foundation of academic understanding of the topic. The three courses I took were: