Degrees and Certifications:
I grew up in the small town of Plainville, Connecticut ( www.plainvillect.com) where I attended Plainville High School ( http://phs.plainvilleschools.org/ ). After graduating from Plainville High School in 1992, I entered Southampton College of Long Island University (LIU)(https://www.liu.edu/). I graduated in 1996 with a BA in Biology. During my time at LIU I worked as a naturalist for both the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History ( www.ccmnh.org)in Brewster, Massachussetts, and the Quogue Wildlife Refuge (quoguewildliferefuge.org/) in Quogue, New York.
After graduating from LIU, I began working as a seasonal field technician for the Wildlife Division of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)(www.ct.gov/deep/cwp/view.asp?a=2723&q=325726&deepNav_GID=1655). Some of my responsibilities included radio-tracking raccoons and bats, performing necropsies on furbearers, and conducting surveys of migratorial birds.
Upon completing my season with the DEP, I began working as a science educator for the Virginia Living Museum (VLM) ( www.thevlm.org) in Newport News, Virginia. At the VLM my job was to teach science programs at the museum as well as in local schools using live wild animals.
After almost 3 years at the VLM I decided to return to school to earn my Master of Science Degree in Biology with a concentration in Applied Ecology at Eastern Kentucky University (www.eku.edu) in Richmond, Kentucky. As a graduate student I researched the possible relationships between and among individual quality, territory quality, and hunting behavior of American Kestrels (Falco sparverius). A portion of this research was published in the Journal of Field Ornithology in 2006 (people.eku.edu/ritchisong/Bostrom_Ritchison_AMKE.pdf ). I also had the opportunity to work on several other projects researching Indigo Buntings (Passerina cyanea), Grasshopper Sparrows (Ammodramus savannarum), Barn Owls (Tyto alba), and Eastern Bluebirds (Sialia sialis). Along with conducting my research, I also taught undergraduate labs in Human Anatomy, Physical Environment, and Introduction to Biology.
Upon completing my Master of Science Degree in Biology I began working at the University of Kentucky ( www.uky.edu) in the Department of Internal Medicine as a senior laboratory technician in a cardiovascular research program. I had the opportunity to start a research project examining the role of MMP9 in the formation of atherosclerosis and abdominal aortic aneurysms in angiotensin 2 induced mice. After about a year I switched labs and began working as a senior laboratory technician in the Department of Entomology ( www.ca.uky.edu/entomology/entomology.php) managing a spider ecology lab. The main goal of the lab was to investigate the community ecology of the forest floor ecosystem using spiders as the model generalist predator.
At the end of 2006, my wife began a post-doctoral fellowship at Wake Forest University which brought us to North Carolina from Kentucky. I began working in the Department of Comparative Medicine Lipid Sciences at Wake Forest University, again working with atherosclerosis. It was around this time that I decided I wanted to teach high school science. I earned my teaching license from the University of North Carolina Greensboro (soe.uncg.edu/) and spent my first 4 years of teaching at West Forsyth High School (http://www.wsfcs.k12.nc.us/Page/9748) in Clemmons, North Carolina. During my years at West Forsyth High School I taught classes in Honors Human Anatomy and Physiology, Earth/Environmental Science, Environmental Science, Physical Science and Honors Chemistry. I also coached the Science Academic Team and was the advisor to the West Forsyth Med Club. In the summer of 2011 my family and I made the move from Winston Salem to Concord where I began teaching at Concord High School (CHS). During my time at CHS I taught classes in both the IB and traditional programs. At CHS I taught Biology (Honors/MYP, Regular), AP Environmental Science, Chemistry (Honors/MYP), Earth/Environmental Science (Honors/MYP, Regular), and Astronomy. I also served as the Science Dept. Chair (1 year) and School Improvement Team Representative (2 years). This year will be my 13th year teaching high school and my second year at Early College High School. I am looking very forward to working with the students at Early College and having a great year.