I am currently serving as an AmeriCorps VISTA developing a guide for mentor programming at the Carnegie Science Center Fab Lab in collaboration with Citizen Schools. In this position I am focused on building capacity in the Fab Lab for more programing and empowering the local community to participate in sustainable solutions using STEM education to address chronic poverty and inequitable education.
I have worked in the federal government for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Science and Technology Council for the White House to translate research about climate change into reports and tools that anyone can understand. I was a staff contributor for the recently published "National Climate Assessment: Volume II."
Before this, I was involved with multiple research projects at Drexel University, quantifying changes to global biodiversity using natural history collections and measuring the impact of hydraulic fracturing to watersheds in central Pennsylvania. I have had experience in multiple departments at the Academy of Natural Sciences and am skilled in a variety of field surveying techniques and data analysis workflows.
My research has been diverse, but focused around increasing the accessibility of the large amount of data at the Academy of Natural Sciences and elsewhere about the world around us. As this data is digitized and published online, I am interested in how others can use this information for education and further research about ecological systems or climate change.
Through my research and extracurricular leadership, I have enjoyed being an advocate for more open communication and data sharing in science, and have volunteered as a student teacher at School of the Future in west Philadelphia and assisted ESL classes in south Philadelphia. I have also completed the Nonprofit Board Management course with Young Involved Philadelphia (YIP).
Minor Planet 28592 “O’Leary” was discovered March 11, 2000 by the Lincoln Laboratory Near-Earth Asteroid Research Team at Socorro and named for after me February 28, 2013. It was named for being a finalist in the Intel (now Regeneron) Science Talent Search in 2013. More information can be found on NASA’s website.
"The classroom should not be the end of your learning."