Meet the Team

Engineer Your World is a product of the UTeachEngineering project at The University of Texas at Austin. It was developed with generous support from the National Science Foundation’s Math and Science Partnership program. Read our project member bios to learn more about us.

David T. Allen, Engineering Faculty

Dr. David Allen is the Gertz Regents Professor of Chemical Engineering, and the Director of the Center for Energy and Environmental Resources, at the University of Texas at Austin. He is the author of seven books and over 200 papers. The quality of his work has been recognized by the National Science Foundation, the AT&T Foundation, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors, and the State of Texas. He has served on a variety of governmental advisory panels and currently chairs the Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board. He has won teaching awards at the University of Texas and UCLA and the Lewis Award in Chemical Engineering Education, from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

Dr. Allen received his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering, with distinction, from Cornell University in 1979. His M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Chemical Engineering were awarded by the California Institute of Technology in 1981 and 1983. He has held visiting faculty appointments at the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, Santa Barbara, and the Department of Energy.

Richard H. Crawford, Engineering Faculty

Dr. Richard Crawford is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Temple Foundation Endowed Faculty Fellow No. 3 at The University of Texas at Austin, where he teaches mechanical engineering design and geometric modeling for design. His commitment to engineering education has been recognized by awards including the 1995 Fred Merryfield Design Award from the American Society for Engineering Education in recognition of his contributions in design education, the 2010 Ralph Coates Roe Award for exemplary Mechanical Engineering educators, and a 2011 University of Texas System Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award. His research interests include a wide spectrum of topics in computer-aided mechanical design and design theory and methodology.

Dr. Crawford received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Louisiana State University in 1982. His M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering were awarded by Purdue University in 1985 and 1989.

Leema K. Berland, Education Faculty

staff-berlandDr. Leema Berland is a Assistant Professor of Curriculum and Instruction at The University of Wisconsin-Madison (WI). Prior to joining the faculty at WI, Dr. Berland was an Assistant Professor of STEM Education at The University of Texas at Austin where she served as the chief learning scientist for the development of Engineer Your World. Dr. Berland continues to collaborate with the course development team to ensure that Engineer Your World aligns with the current research about how people learn. Dr. Berland is currently a Co-Principal Investigator on the National Science Foundation-funded project “Supporting Scientific Practices in Elementary and Middle School Classrooms.” In addition, she is a researcher on the UTeachEngineering project.

Dr. Berland received her Ph.D. in the Learning Sciences from Northwestern University in 2008.

Catherine Riegle-Crumb

Catherine Riegle-CrumbDr. Riegle-Crumb’s research interests center upon gender and racial/ethnic inequality in educational experiences and achievement in math and science. As a sociologist of education, she is particularly interested in the role of social contexts, including friendships, schools, and communities, in increasing or ameliorating educational disparities. Her research also focuses on the complex intersection between gender and race/ethnicity with regard to educational inequality. Dr. Riegle-Crumb’s work has been funded with grants from several agencies and foundations, including the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. Her research expertise includes quantitative research methods and analyses of national datasets.

Dr. Riegle-Crumb received her Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Chicago (2000)

Cheryl Farmer, Project Director

Cheryl Farmer is the founding Project Director of UTeachEngineering. She has worked in higher education for the past 10 years, during which time she has developed, launched and managed a number of programs focused on improving education in engineering, mathematics and liberal arts for students across the K-16 spectrum. Before entering higher education, she worked as a project manager in the environmental field. Ms. Farmer’s passion for teaching was formally recognized by the University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Mathematics in 1998 when, as a graduate student, she was honored to receive the department’s Dodd Teaching Excellence Award.

Ms. Farmer’s education includes graduate work in mathematics and business administration. She earned a B.A. in Mathematics, summa cum laude, from The University of Texas at Austin in 1996.

Theresa Dobbs, Senior Program Coordinator

Theresa Dobbs joined UTeachEngineering in March 2009 to manage the project’s in-service teacher programs and its Master of Arts in STEM Education — Engineering program. In 2013 she transitioned into the role of Senior Program Coordinator for Engineer Your World. Prior to joining the UTeachEngineering team, Theresa worked at the Center for Lifelong Engineering Education (CLEE) at The University of Texas at Austin, where she was responsible for the administration of 100+ short courses, conferences and certificate programs, with program topics covering a variety of engineering disciplines. Before joining the University, Theresa worked for the National Alliance for Insurance Education and Research as a program coordinator. In all, Theresa has over 15 years of management and meeting planning experience.

Ms. Dobbs received her B.B.A in Marketing from Texas A&M University.