How long have you worked at littleBits?
I started as a temp in early October 2012 and was then hired full time as the Office Manager/Executive Assistant.
What led you to the position?
I was originally looking to work at a non-profit after grad school and through a few twists of fate, landed here. I was impressed by the company mission and the caliber of people who work here. The littleBits culture is an interesting mix of creative genius and nose to the grindstone, it’s a contagious and invigorating environment to work in.
I’m a scientist (undergrad in animal biology and masters in conservation biology) by training, so I think I bring a medium to medium high level of geekiness to the mix… although naturally it’s hard to compete with the engineers. Ayah gave me a preserved spider for our Secret Santa last year, I think that explains a lot.
I moved into the Education Program Manager role in July, which is a great fit for my background in science and drive to inspire the next generation of innovators.
Describe a typical work day.
My typical workday is never typical. That’s what I love about working at a start up – there’s always something new to learn and problems to solve. Currently our education team is working diligently on our sales strategy, community outreach and improving the education product and website experience. One of my favorite parts of my job is seeing people experience littleBits for the first time, so anytime I can demo, workshop or attend an education event is a good day.
You have worked with a lot of teachers on a variety of workshops, can you tell me about some of your favorites?
In April, Karen Balliett and I ran a Teacher Discovery Workshop in our office, which was an amazing opportunity to work alongside some outstanding STEAM educators and administrators from the NYC area. The feedback and momentum from that night had a powerful and lasting impact on our education team. We recently took the Bits on the road to Edcamp STEAM, which was a day filled with littleBits exploration, hacking toys and meeting educators across the STEAM disciplines.
What advice would you give educators who are curious about using littleBits in the classroom?
Embrace the possibilities of the Bit! littleBits are intuitive blocks that can enhance your current lessons and take them to the next level. Do you teach a lesson on the solar system? Use the Bits to make a model of the phases of the moon. How about animal communication? Create a firefly that mimics the pulse rate of a species-specific flash pattern.
What else are you working on besides littleBits?
Photography is in the blood, I grew up as the subject, and later student, of my dad’s portrait photography studio. Last summer I bought my first professional Nikon camera and it was love at first sight. I enjoy documenting my travels, but one of my favorite everyday subjects is finding unexpected nature in urban spaces – its like hide and seek for pretty things.
What Bit do you identify with?
The pulse Bit. It’s an adaptable Bit and I can control the rhythm of charge that flows through me. Whether you need me to be the calm in the storm (literally, Hurricane Sandy) or race downtown to lead a demo on a moment’s notice – I’m your girl.
Favorite thing about living in the city?
I’ve lived in the city for three years and it still amazes me that every bar and restaurant on a block can be filled to the brim at midnight on a random Tuesday night. There’s always options for food and entertainment. Honestly I’m more of a country mouse at heart, so I gravitate towards Central Park for my weekend dose of sunshine and green grass.
Also, please tell us about Logan. What’s his Bit?
Logan is a lovable fur ball that entered my life in 2009. I was fostering shelter dogs while I was living in DC and we quickly committed to a long term relationship. He’s a spunky collie x golden retriever mix thats 0% shy and 110% snuggly. He loves visiting the littleBits team, especially the ladies. Mid-day Logan hugs are the best medicine.
Logan is definitely a buzzer, he’s known for his signature happy howl.