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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

7 Things You Didn't Know About Sharon Bendall

Sharon Bendall
Reading a Jane Austen novel on an island in Belize would be Liberal Studies Coordinator Sharon Bendall’s perfect day!  Learn more about Sharon in this month’s edition of 7 Things You Didn’t Know About the COE Faculty and Staff.

Sharon has three twenty-something children who she loves spending time with.  They live in San Francisco, Santa Monica and Lexington.
Sharon’s son and daughter in CA work in tech companies. Her daughter in Lexington is pursuing a doctorate in evolutionary biology. They have family dinner together once a week via Google Hangout, and have holidays and vacations together often.

Sharon coauthored a textbook for middle school science entitled InterActions in Physical Science. The National Science Foundation funded the development of the textbook and ancillary materials.
That project was so much fun! I spent lots of time in middle schools with students and teachers. Many districts in the U.S., including San Diego Unified School District, adopted the book.

Sharon decided to become a physicist when she was only in third grade.
Her teacher did simple science experiments with the class, and showed them videos of people doing other experiments. Sharon would go home and do the experiments for her family, sort of putting on a show for them. Sharon never wavered from her desire to study physics, and completed a MS in physics at Arizona State University.

After graduate school, Sharon worked as a research scientist for IBM in Yorktown Heights, NY. 
After two years in New York, Sharon was lonely for her best friend in graduate school, so she moved to San Diego to marry him - definitely a great decision! During that time she transitioned from being a research scientist to a science educator.

Sharon likes to sew.
Mostly Sharon sews clothing but occasionally she will make a quilt. She has taken many sewing classes over the years. Garment construction is very important, but a lot depends on choosing the right fabric. The biggest compliment anyone can pay Sharon’s sewing is asking where she purchased a dress that she actually made herself!

Sharon absolutely loves to travel.
Sharon enjoys going just about anywhere, but she has a particular affinity for places like the Caribbean. Last spring Sharon took a group of SDSU students to Belize for study abroad, then stayed a few extra days on one of the Belizean islands. She took a resort diving lesson and did four dives. It was awesome! Sharon is hoping to get fully dive certified before going to Playa del Carmen over the winter holidays.

Sharon is a big Jane Austen fan.
Novels, movies, you name it and if Jane is associated with it then Sharon's probably enjoyed it.  Sharon even named her miniature poodle Mr. Darcy! Emma is Sharon’s favorite Austen story, but the name Mr. Darcy has a much better ring than Emma’s beau Mr. Knightly. Honestly, who would name a dog Mr. Knightly?

How Sharon is making a difference in the College of Education:

“I loved school when I was growing up, and I have always had a passion for learning. I enjoy sharing that passion with our Liberal Studies majors. I am particularly concerned about preparing students for life in the 21st century, our university students and the future students they will teach. We are living in an exciting time when creativity, collaboration and multiculturalism are encouraged and valued. I am pleased to help our majors develop a solid intellectual foundation from which they can inspire our next generations.”