Sara Chavarria, Ph.D.

Co-Principal Investigator

Assistant Dean, Research Development

College of Education

Sara Chavarria has been designing and conducting informal educational programming that creates learner-centered interactive experiences for underserved and underrepresented students as well as for teachers that serve these populations.  She is especially interested in best practices for attraction and retention of low income, first generation undergraduate students. More recently, Sara has been connecting College of Education researchers with UA faculty to leverage Education science expertise on topics such as Access, Inclusion, Diversity, and Retention of students to facilitate research on effective learning practices for UA students and PK-12 audiences. She is also busy collaborating with researchers and staff across campus to facilitate institutional partnerships, support effective initiatives, and advance scholarship that promote equitable access to high-quality STEM experiences, resources, tools, and expertise (also as part of her role within the UA STEM Learning Center). 

Dr. Chavarria is currently the PI of an innovative Office of Naval Research project using geospatial applications with undergrads to positively affect the STEM fields’ persistence rates of ROTC students. The project is designed to provide students in ROTC, as well as student veterans, with an opportunity to use geospatial thinking in a relevant and hands-on environment. NAVIGATE is an immersive science, engineering, technology, and mathematics, or STEM, training program that will provide students with specialized, defense-related training in geospatial technology.