Buffy Cushman-Patz

Buffy Cushman-Patz

Fellowship Placement: National Science Foundation
Cohort: 2010-2011

Buffy Cushman-Patz is the founder and School Leader of SEEQS: the School for Examining Essential Question of Sustainability, a public charter secondary school in Honolulu, Hawai’i. Buffy served her Einstein Fellowship from 2010-2011 as the inaugural fellow in the Office of Legislative and Public Affairs (OLPA) at the National Science Foundation.

Following her Fellowship year, Buffy completed her Master’s of Education in School Leadership at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, with School Development as her concentration. During this program she simultaneously wrote and submitted the charter application for SEEQS, and earned her principal's license while serving as a member of the leadership team of Neighborhood House Charter School in Dorchester, Massachusetts.

Prior to the Fellowship, Buffy taught math and science in public, charter, and independent schools in Hawai'i. She earned an M.S. in Geology and Geophysics from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa and a B.S. in Geology from the University of Florida. In early 2010, Buffy returned to the Galapagos Spreading Center, her M.S. thesis study area, to serve as a Teacher at Sea, sharing geologic research conducted using the Alvin submersible with students in Hawai’i and around the world.

In the summers of 2008 and 2010, she volunteered with Teachers Without Borders, leading math and science workshops for teachers in South Africa.  Buffy’s exploration of teaching and learning through the lenses of theory, policy, leadership, and through her firsthand experiences as a teacher in both conventional and unconventional settings, guides her work as a School Leader.