Mentor Biography

Dave Boyd


I began my teaching/learning career in the Sierra Nevada Mountains at the ripe age of thirteen. Amazed by the plants, animals, rocks and blue sky of the high mountains, I wanted to know more of their lives. After high school (1970) and six years in the U.S. Navy (electronics), I returned to these amazing creatures and eventually earned a BA in Biology (1981) from Humboldt State University (Arcata, Ca.). Wanting to infect others with this amazing knowledge I had found, I earned a teaching certificate (1988) at Southern Oregon State College (Ashland, Or.). Sensing adventure, three days later I drove my Toyota "Corolla" up the Alcan and Cassiar highways to Alaska, where I was hired to my first real teaching job in the Yupik Eskimo village of Hooper Bay (lower Yukon). The next four years were spent in Hooper Bay teaching the wonders of math, science, reading and writing to some amazing kids, while learning much of the native ways of hunting, fishing, sewing furs and coaching b-ball. Moving to Fairbanks in 1992, I spent two graduate years doing research on the Aleutian Shield fern before returning to the classroom in 1995. I spent the next fourteen years in the chemistry and physical science labs of Lathrop high school in Fairbanks.

Now, I am beginning my third year of adventure as an Alaska teacher mentor. I am looking forward to the challenges of supporting Alaska's kids by helping new and enthusiastic teachers find there way in rural schools throughout the state.

Finally, I say thank you to all the students I have known, from all the places and classes, who have taught me more than I ever thought possible. I look forward to repaying you (in a good way) by leaving ever better teachers, for you, in my wake.