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Getting to know your QCC Faculty & Staff

January, 2018

Andria Schwortz -  Professor of Physics and Astronomy

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I love teaching, and learning about how people learn things. I had my first peer-reviewed journal article published last year: Schwortz, Burrows, & Guffey. (2017). Mentoring Partnerships in Science Education. Educational Action Research. 25(4): 630-649. 
Free preprints: https://arxiv.org/abs/1610.04808

Department: Natural Sciences

Office location: Administration Building Room 270.

Contact informationaschwortz [at] qcc.mass.edu; extension 7495

Tell us about your role at QCC: I am a Professor of Physics and Astronomy. I teach classes ranging from conceptual astronomy for non-majors who need just one Math or science course to graduate, to calculus-based physics for engineers. The variety keeps me on my toes, and I never get bored! 

How long have you worked at QCC?I started as full-time faculty at QCC in August 2004, with a three-year professional leave of absence from Aug 2012 to Aug 2015 to start work on my PhD in Physics.

What is your favorite movie? I'm a sucker for anything in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I'm really looking forward to the upcoming Black Panther film, as I've been really enjoying Afrofuturist science fiction books lately, and I'm looking forward to seeing the genre on the big screen. I can't wait to see if Wakanda has the Soul Gem.

What is your favorite T.V. show? I recently binged the first two seasons of Once Upon A Time on Netflix. I started off watching it as background noise while grading final exams, and the combination of fairy tales (the show draws from Disney Princess films, but is heavily influenced by the comic book Fables) and soap opera style drama just sucked me in!

What was the best book you ever read? Speaking of Afrofuturism, I can't stop singing the praises of the N.K. Jemisin's "The Fifth Season". It starts off seeming like any other fantasy novel, with a main character who has a type of magic that can affect earthquakes, but as you go through the novel you realize it's a deep reflection on the constant nature of oppression and slavery, and their opposing forces of hope and survival.

What do you like to do in your free time? I read a lot of science fiction (mostly in audiobook format), I knit (currently working on my first long-sleeve sweater), and I play with my bird Kappa (not pictured).

We want to learn about you! Please share your story with your colleagues. Please fill out the attached faculty/staff spotlight form and be the next spotlight.