Today we’re thrilled to announce that Maya Morales Garcia has joined Beyond100K as our Chief Program Officer. As the Chief Program Officer, Maya will lead our Community Team to organize and mobilize the network to make meaningful progress toward their unique commitments and against the myriad of systemic challenges that stand in the way of our goal of preparing and retaining 150K new STEM teachers, especially for schools serving majority Black, Latinx, and Native American students. Our aim — audacious yet achievable — is in service of a future where all young people experience joyful, inclusive, and excellent STEM learning and thrive in the classroom, field, and beyond.
When asked why this role is important to her, Maya shared, “My parents were my first STEM teachers helping me cultivate a connection to the land as well as a lifelong love of learning. These early experiences laid the foundation for my journey in STEM. As a woman of color and dedicated STEM educator, I am deeply committed to ensuring our youth have access to affirming and inclusive STEM learning environments and experiences. I plan to continue doing that work alongside this amazing team and in community with our partners.”
Maya joins us at a pivotal moment in the arc of Beyond100K (formerly 100Kin10), as we build on our success in preparing 100,000 excellent STEM teachers in our first decade and focus, over this decade, on the needs and opportunities of Black, Latinx, and Native American learners and teachers and supporting the cultivation of workplaces and classrooms of belonging.
She previously served as the Science and STEM education lead for the Colorado Department of Education. Prior to that, Maya served as the Director of STEM for the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education where she oversaw standards implementation efforts and led strategic initiatives in STEM. In this capacity, she cultivated cross-sector stakeholder groups that served to advance implementation efforts and launched their STEM Learning Ecosystem. Maya taught 8th-grade science for eight years in the District of Columbia, where she also led professional development and served as a master teacher.
“While getting to know Maya throughout the interview process, it immediately felt like her trajectory and Beyond100K’s trajectory were meeting at the just-right moment. That kismet doesn’t happen every day,” said Talia Milgrom-Elcott, Executive Director and Founder of Beyond100K. “I am confident that Maya will lead us to do some of our best work. I look forward to a partnership that continues to deepen and blossom as we learn and learn from each other in service of our mission: a future where all young people, particularly Black, Latinx, and Native Americans, experience joyful, inclusive, excellent STEM learning.”
After teaching middle school science for 8 years, Maya served as the Director of STEM for the DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education where she oversaw standards implementation efforts and led strategic initiatives in STEM, including the launch of the DC STEM Network. Most recently, Maya served as the Science Content Specialist with the Colorado Department of Education. Maya serves on several national boards including but not limited to the Council of State Science Supervisors.
Maya holds a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and behavior from Mount Holyoke College, a MAT from American University in DC, and is currently pursuing her doctorate of education in leadership for educational equity at the University of Colorado, Denver.
She is based in Colorado and is often described as collaborative, curious, a boundary-spanner, and equity and justice-focused. Maya is an avid world traveler and lover of coffee.