Maurice Stephenson, Ph.D.
I was born in Guyana, South America, immigrated to the USA in the 1970s with my family and settled in the Washington, DC Area. I attended a small local college, The University of The District of Columbia, (UDC), where I obtained a BSc Degree in Chemistry. I then attended Howard University for an MSC Degree in Organic Chemistry, and then I moved to Southern California to complete my academic studies. I obtained a Ph.D. Degree in Physical Organic Chemistry from the University of Southern California (USC) and have since worked as an educator and research scientist.
Since childhood, I have always enjoyed doing science experiments. Coming from a large family, one of the gifts my brothers and I usually got at Christmastime was science modeling kits to play, work with, and enjoy. These experiences sparked my interest in science and engineering and laid the foundation for my desire to pursue a career in science and technology. In addition, during my high school years, I have taught my classmates and colleagues fundamental and complex math and science concepts. In college, I was a tutor, mentor, and teaching assistant to students in the Chemistry Department. It has always been my philosophy as an educator that all students can learn and that the differentiation of instruction to meet students’ needs is a critical component to engaging students in learning.
Finally, having grown up along the coastline of Guyana, I have acquired a passionate love of nature. I always look forward to walks on the beach and rides along the boardwalk here in Santa Monica. The Santa Monica Stairs are truly an excellent way to exercise and clear my thoughts. My other hobbies include hiking, running, reading, traveling, and writing. Our current experience with COVID-19 has awakened in me a greater sense of wonder about how natural processes occur and a deeper appreciation and value for all living systems.