RPCS Welcomes New STEM Institute Director

RPCS Welcomes New STEM Institute Director
Dear Roland Park Country School Community,
I am thrilled to announce the appointment of Neda Blackburn as the next STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Institute Director at Roland Park Country School, effective this August. Neda will join us from Garrison Forest School, where she is currently the Upper School Digital Learning Specialist.  This STEM Institute Director position is endowed in perpetuity as a result of a generous pledge made by Holliday “Holly” Cross Heine, 1962 and her husband John “Jack” C. Heine earlier this year to support the STEM and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) curricula at RPCS.

At Garrison Forest, Neda works closely with the faculty and administration and teaches computer science to an all-girls population. She recreated her position when she took it on three years ago and made it her mission to encourage  students to take at least one computer science class in their Upper School career. Since then, the number of students taking computer science class has increased every year.
Neda is also an adjunct faculty member for the Business Program at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. She earned her doctorate in Educational Technology from George Mason University and holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University. Neda received her undergraduate degree in Computer Science at Duquesne University.
Neda is passionate about helping students of all ages succeed in STEAM/STEAM subjects, with a particular focus on helping young women cultivate an interest in these fields. As a computer scientist, she knows what it’s like to work in a male-dominated field and understands how vital it is to have encouragement in order to excel. Neda strongly believes that  interest in STEM and STEAM subjects can be generated through exposure to the content, a community of support and positive role models.
As Neda told us when she applied for the position, “I am eager to help create more opportunities for students to learn and create with the evolving world of technology, and I am especially excited to prepare young women with the tools they need to confidently shape their own futures.”
I would like to thank the faculty search committee: Colleen Kyle, Sara Rollfinke, Akailah McIntyre, Amy Popp, Kristin Loftus, Rose Berns-Zieve, and Joe LePain for the time and effort they put into the hiring process. I’m confident that Neda will be a terrific addition to our RPCS family.
I am eager to continue to strengthen our robust STEM and STEAM programs and am excited for what lies ahead! When Neda arrives in August, I know you will join me in giving her a warm welcome to Roland Park Country School.
Caroline Blatti
Head of School