Linda Hennenberg

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Alumni Spotlight

Linda Hennenberg

BS, Physics, Northern Arizona University
Graduate Diploma, Science Communication, Laurentian University

What she does:

Hennenberg is the manager of extracurricular programs at the Arizona Science Center, a hands-on science museum. She runs summer and day camps for school-aged children.

How she got the job:

“When I started in college in my physics major, I wanted to go get my PhD, be a professor, a researcher, or something,” she says. “But through SPS and my department I did a lot of outreach, where kids would come to our department or we would go to schools, and I thought that was way more fun than the research opportunities I tried out.”

Hennenberg ultimately took a graduate program in science communications at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada. There, she says, “a lot of the classes were based at a science museum,” so she got a lot of hands-on work. After working on the floor at a museum in Nevada, she landed a position at the Arizona Science Center and worked her way up to her current position.

Why you would want this job:

“Working at a museum is a very rewarding job, even if you don’t want it as a career for the rest of your life. A lot of museums, they also have active research programs. So there are lots of opportunities for people to do more education or more research and get a good balance.”

How physics made a difference:

Hennenberg’s volunteer outreach work as an undergraduate helped her learn what she wanted to do, and her knowledge of physics helps her today when developing programs and activities. “I don’t have to do a whole lot of research to write those activities,” she says. “We have programs about electronics and making circuits, and those are kind of easy for me to teach, because I have that knowledge.” Further, she says, having a background in the scientific method helps her develop activities on any topic—she recently created a series about sharks. “And all that scientific mindset, I guess, is something I learned in college that I can definitely translate to my job.” //

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