Just after graduating from Ohio State University, Dave took a job as a high school physics and physical science teacher in Cleveland’s inner city. His biggest challenge was keeping his students engaged in science. He found that he could hold their attention through a combination of daily demonstrations and highly creative, interactive labs.
After receiving a Master’s in General Science from Oregon State University, Dave taught high school physics for the next eight years. During the summer, Dave had time to program and tinker with software applications he’d been using in his classes, which helped his students see real-life data and scientific phenomena in real time.
The tools Dave used in his earliest classes were the basis for what was to become Vernier’s core curriculum of physics and science products. Since then, the company has partnered with world-class manufacturers such as Texas Instruments, and has expanded into products that support chemistry, biology, engineering, environmental sciences, and K-8 science.
Today, Dave’s years in the classroom continue to guide the development of all of Vernier’s products. Dave and wife/co-founder, Christine, remain mindful of the unique needs of educators, developing curriculum and products, including data-collection software, sensors, and interfaces that are dynamic and relevant for students, yet are easy for teachers to use. All of Vernier’s employees know the importance of hands-on education in the sciences; and, they maintain a focus on developing high-quality products that are still within the budgets of teachers and schools.
“Every product we offer has been developed in direct response to a need or a usage suggested by a teacher,” says John Wheeler, Director of Engineering and a Partner at Vernier. “We try to build as much flexibility into our hardware and software products as possible, so teachers can use them as a starting point and take them as far as they want or need.”
As Christine Vernier puts it, “Our goal is to make sure teachers have what they need, when they need it, along with the best support we can provide.”
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