Opening in September for Grade 7-9

Junior High Teachers

School Principal
Matthew Kierstead, B.Ed., M.Ed., Ed.D.

Dr. Kierstead has served as a principal for over 25 years at all levels, Pre-kindergarten to Grade 12. After graduating from the University of Alberta, obtaining his Bachelor of Education with a major in Industrial Arts, he began his career as a junior/senior high teacher in the northern community of Fort Chipewyan.

After leaving the north, Dr. Kierstead served as principal both in schools and the central office of Parkland School Division in Spruce Grove and Stony Plain. Prior to joining STEM Collegiate, Dr. Kierstead was with Black Gold School Division having been principal in the communities of Devon and Beaumont. Dr. Kierstead was awarded the 2021/2022 Alberta Teachers Association - Council of School Leadership - Distinguished Leadership Award.

In addition to his professional life, Dr. Kierstead has also volunteered his time with many service organizations such as Rotary International, Alberta Conflict Transformation Society, and PDK University of Alberta Chapter.

During vacation time, Dr. Kierstead enjoys various travel adventures with his wife, and they most recently traveled Europe south to north starting in Cyprus and ending in Amsterdam last summer.

Director of Mathematics
Leonard Arden, B.Ed., M.Ed.

Mr. Arden is originally from east central Alberta. He grew up on a farm and started working in the family business at a young age. As a self-described math & science nerd, Mr. Arden obtained both his Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.,) and Master of Educational Leadership from the University of Alberta. His B.Ed. includes a major in biological sciences and a minor in physical sciences. For more than two decades, Mr. Arden has been a math and science teacher for both on-line and in-person 7-12 programs.

In addition to several years teaching secondary students in the Sturgeon School Division, Mr. Arden has held positions of special responsibility in his previous roles. These include, mathematics department head, science department head, professional development instructor, Academic Chair at SAIT polytechnic School of Construction, Manager of Advanced Education and Technology, and Associate Director of Learning Services for the Council of Health Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan.

Anyone who talks with Mr. Arden about his teaching career quickly understands why he was twice nominated for the Excellence in Teaching Mathematics and Science Award. Mr. Arden is a pragmatic yet innovative educator who thrives on the intrinsic rewards of teaching students Stem subjects and mentoring others. STEM Collegiate is thrilled to have Mr. Arden join the leadership team as our Director of Math.

In addition to teaching, Len enjoys gardening, woodworking, restoring calculators, and outdoor sports.

Director of Science
Monique Saunders, B.Ed., B.Sc.

Ms. Saunders was born in Sydney, Australia, but was raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She pursued an Integrated Education programme at the University of Winnipeg where she majored in Biology and European History, graduating in 2008.

After teaching in Canada for two years, she went to England to expand her knowledge of teaching science and develop new techniques and skills to enhance students’ personalised learning. During her time in the UK, Ms. Saunders held various roles as part of her assignments at several secondary schools including STEM teacher, Head of STEM enrichment and took on the responsibility to create and run STEM clubs for Middle and Senior High students. She also crated an Eco School project which allowed students to experience hand-on learning in different fields of STEM while developing teamwork and presentation skills.

Having spent 15 years teaching science in Essex and Kent, STEM Collegiate is excited to welcome Ms. Saunders back to her home country of Canada as our Director of Science. As part of this leadership role, Ms. Saunders will bring her experience and focus on advancing STEM education to her team of teachers.

When she's not teaching, Monique indulges in her love of travel, hiking and photography, often visiting museums to deepen her understanding of science and history or off on a trail taking pictures of landscapes.

Teacher - Science, Mathematics & Physical Education
Kevin Chambers, B.Ed., B.Sc.

Mr. Chambers has a Bachelor of Science from Concordia University of Edmonton and subsequently obtained a Bachelor of Education from the University of Alberta.

During his time as a student at Concordia University in Edmonton, Mr. Chambers was the recipient of numerous academic accolades including, Student of the Year (2016) Award and Physical Science Academic Award (2015). For three consecutive years, Mr. Chambers was also awarded the Government of Alberta Louise McKinney Scholarship (2014, 2015, 2015).

Mr. Chambers has several years of experience teaching Science, Math, Physical Education (PE) and Career Technology Foundations (CTF) courses in a variety of settings, including Charter Schools.

In 2019, Mr. Chambers volunteered and taught high school Science and Math for a semester in Kenya. He is excited to share his passion for teaching Science and all things Athletics with STEM Collegiate students.

In his free time, Mr. Chambers enjoys traveling with his wife and daughter, playing sports with friends, listening to music, and taking his dog for walks in nearby parks.

Teacher - Science, Mathematics & Career Technology Foundations Options
Stephen Chase, B.Ed., B.Sc.

Mr. Chase holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Physical Science from the University of Alberta and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Calgary. Those who know Mr. Chase describe him as a dedicated educator who finds nothing more interesting than an experiment. He fondly calls himself a “science-nerd” whose lifelong passion for learning was kindled by his science-teacher father, along with an innate curiosity. He spent his childhood exploring the natural world and conducting investigations, driven by a fascination to understand and create.

After high school, working as an outdoor guide in the Rocky Mountains, Mr. Chase discovered his true calling as an educator. He found great meaning in supporting groups of students through novel and challenging experiences. Very soon into his teaching career Mr. Chase recognized that experiential learning is a highly effective way to cultivate knowledge and skills; the best way to learn is to “Do”.

Mr. Chase continues to channel his innate scientific curiosity, focusing now on learning STEM solutions to enhance his home, workplace, and classroom practice. Leveraging these interests, he takes great pride in dreaming up interactive and experiential learning activities to get students enthusiastic and engaged with the sciences, technology, and the natural world. His approach has yielded great success throughout his teaching career thus far, both in the UK and more recently in St. Albert.

Now, as he looks forward to his new role at STEM Collegiate, Mr. Chase is eager to share his enthusiasm with a new generation of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics innovators. He is excited and looking forward to the start of the 2023 school year.

Teacher - Social Studies & English Language Arts
Marina Gendi, B.Ed., B.A.

Born in the small city of London, Ontario, Ms. Gendi moved to Edmonton when she was 13. In 2021, she graduated from the University of Alberta, where she completed a bachelor’s degree (B.Ed.,) in secondary education with a major in social studies and minor in French.

Prior to pursuing a B.Ed., she obtained a bachelor of arts from Concordia University of Edmonton, majoring in history and minoring in social studies. Ms. Gendi is currently working towards obtaining a master’s degree in educational studies, focusing on technology in the classroom, such as artificial intelligence.

Ms. Gendi joins STEM Collegiate staff after two years teaching abroad at a Canadian International School in Egypt. Although she will miss many aspects of working and living in Cairo, she is eager to start her next adventure back home in Alberta. She is passionate about teaching a high-quality social studies program and hopes to offer her coaching skills to STEM Collegiate students who wish to participate in Model United Nations (MUN). MUN teaches students leadership and teamwork skills through learning how to effectively speak, debate and write on important topics of international relevance. Ms. Gendi has fond memories of when she travelled to China as a young student to compete at a MUN conference.

Ms. Gendi enjoys reading good novels (especially on stormy days), as well as being outdoors camping, travelling, and hiking.

Teacher - English Language Arts & Physical Education
Amelia Hill, B.Ed., B.Sc. Kin.,

Ms. Hill will soon complete a combined degree from the University of Alberta as part of her teacher training. Upon graduation, she will have Bachelor of Kinesiology and Bachelor of Education, with a major in physical education (PE) and a minor in English language arts (ELA). Her post-secondary credentials will also include a certificate of Indigenous Sports and Recreation.

Throughout her practicums, Ms. Hill focused on ensuring that learning ELA course outcomes was both fun and intellectually engaging for junior and senior high aged students. Her goal when teaching PE is to help students find their niche in a particular group or individual sport thereby inspiring teens to embrace a life-long dedication to regular physical activity as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Wrestling in both Junior High and High School, as well as for a short time in university, was an invaluable experience that taught Ms. Hill the importance of pursuing goals by embracing the values of integrity, perseverance, and teamwork. She looks forward to coaching STEM Collegiate students in a variety of sports.

Although no longer a competitive athlete, Ms. Hill continues to respect those team values as she grows as a coach and teacher to help the next generation of students and athletes reach their full potential. In her free time, Ms. Hill enjoys kayaking, hiking, playing ball-hockey or working out at her local gym.

Teacher - Career Technology Foundation Options
Rodney Kennedy, B.Ed.

Mr. Kennedy has more than 25 years of successful and innovative classroom experience at every grade level. He started his teaching career after completing a bachelor’s degree at the University of Alberta (U of A) with a specialization in elementary education.

From the get-go, Mr. Kennedy has been keenly involved with all aspects of technology in the classroom. Upon graduation from the U of A, his first job was as a K-12 computer teacher. After that assignment, he spent seven years as a junior high technology teacher, followed by ten years teaching high school CTS courses.

STEM Collegiate is very fortunate to have Mr. Kennedy join as a staff member for it’s inaugural year. For the last two years, Mr. Kennedy has been teaching CTF options courses at our junior high sister school in Calgary, STEM Innovation Academy, and he will be spearheading the start up of our options courses.

Students appreciate that Mr. Kennedy likes to bring lots of lighthearted fun to the classroom and are generally amused by his unique collection of Air Jordan running shoes that he often wears to school. Mr. Kennedy enjoys sharing some of his outside interests with students by offering fencing, archery, and drone Clubs.

Mr. Kennedy is already starting to plan the perfect pair of Air Jordans to sport at STEM Collegiate in the Fall!

Teacher - Mathematics & Career Technology Foundation Options
Adrian Madrinan, B.Ed.

Born in the Philippines, Mr. Madrinan moved to Edmonton in 2007. With an innate passion for mathematics and teaching, Adrian was inspired to pursue a career in teaching to motivate and encourage young learners.

Mr. Madrinan graduated from the University of Alberta’s Bachelor of Education Program in 2022 with a major in mathematics and a minor in physics. Since that time, he has been teaching for the Edmonton Catholic School Division.

He has experience teaching mathematics to junior and senior high students and continues to love every single moment. When Mr. Madrinan isn't teaching, he enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing video games, or watching movies.

You can also catch him in the gym getting in a good workout or playing sports such as basketball or rock climbing. Adrian is excited and eager to be a part of the STEM Collegiate community and show learners the beauty of mathematics.

Teacher - Mathematics & Career Technology Foundation Options
Hannah Terkper, B.Ed.

Ms. Terkper was born in Ghana, West Africa, but her family immigrated to Canada when she was seven years old. She grew up in a small town in Northern British Columbia where she became drawn to the outdoors, which inevitably drew her towards future pursuits as a biology major in university.

When she was 16, her family moved to Edmonton where she finished her high school education. Upon moving to Alberta, she taught piano lessons, thereby gaining a passion and appreciation for teaching.

After completing grade 12, Ms. Terkper attended the University of Alberta where she obtained a major in biological sciences, a minor in mathematics, and an additional certification in sustainability. While working towards her Bachelor of Education, she worked as an educational assistant in public schools, primarily assisting English language learners and special needs students with their core subjects.

Upon graduating in 2022, she accepted a junior high and high school assignment in Vermillion Alberta teaching science and math. Ms. Terkper relishes opportunities to coach school volleyball teams and offering extra-curricular clubs such as ‘student council’.

During her free time, Ms. Terkper enjoys exploring coding languages with her dad as well as hiking, volleyball, and playing the piano and ukulele.

Teacher - Social Studies & English Language Arts
Scott Turner, B.Ed., B.A.

Mr. Turner is a Canadian-born educator with a diverse upbringing that has shaped his personal and professional journey. Born in Ontario, he spent his formative years splitting time between England and Canada, where he developed a keen interest in history through his grandfather's war stories.

Fuelled by his passion for the past, Mr. Turner pursued an undergraduate degree in history at the University of Guelph, where he honed critical thinking and analytical skills. It was during this time he discovered his natural talent for teaching and began tutoring students, sparking his love for education.

After completing undergraduate studies, Mr. Turner decided to deepen his knowledge of teaching by enrolling in Niagara University's teacher education program. Following graduation, he embarked on a teaching career in London, England, where he taught in various schools and gained valuable international experience.

A lover of the great outdoors, Mr. Turner was always drawn to Alberta's rugged beauty, particularly after a memorable childhood trip through the Rockies. After three years teaching in the UK, it was this memory of the wild rose landscape that pulled him to move back to Canada and settle in Alberta.