The K-12 Engagement Network seeks to broaden the reach and awareness of the Penn State opportunities and resources for K-12 students, educators, administrators, and families by supporting and promoting University entities working in the K–12 space.


  1. Connecting Penn State and K-12 communities across Pennsylvania by sharing and communicating engagement opportunities
  2. Collaborating to solve problems by understanding K-12 needs and leveraging Penn State expertise
  3. Building capacity to support schools and enabling growth through partnerships

Our Team

Amanda SmithDirector

Amanda Smith, M.Ed.

Amanda began her career as a middle and high school science teacher, engaging in outreach and professional experiences that dramatically impacted her work and teaching philosophy. These experiences included participating in the Zero Gravity Flight program sponsored by Northrop Grumman and leading a K–12 group on an ecological trip to Costa Rica.

Since 2014, she has served as the STEM outreach liaison for the Penn State Center for Science and the Schools (CSATS). She co-founded a STEM Learning Ecosystem in central Pennsylvania to drive cross-sector partnerships which established the Chief Science Officers (CSO) program, Remake Learning Days, and STEM Workforce Summits. Amanda, along with other STEM Learning Ecosystem leaders across Pennsylvania, was an integral part of the team to develop the PA STEM Education Policy memo to the U.S. Department of Education under the Biden administration. Currently, she serves as the Director of K-12 Engagement Network, where she is responsible to further bridge K-12 and Penn State University. 

Amanda earned a B.S. in biology and science education from Penn State in 2005 and an M.Ed. in education leadership with a K–12 administration certification from George Mason University in 2009.

Executive Advisers

Justin Aglio, Associate Vice President for Outreach, Penn State and Executive Director, Readiness Institute at Penn State

Larry Terry, Vice President for Outreach, Penn State

Marketing and Communications Contacts

Sarah Naylor, Marketing Strategist

Vincent Corso, News and Communications

Strategic Support Team

Development — Susan Kukic, Penn State Outreach and Online Education Development and Alumni Relations

Finance — Tracey Demko, Penn State Outreach and Online Education Central Finance

Compliance and Contracts — Marci Tomasacci and Michele Whitman, Penn State Outreach and Online Education Compliance and Contracts

Web Strategy and Technology — Greg Angle, Penn State Outreach and Online Education Marketing, Technology, and Operations

Operations — Juliana Gabany, Penn State Center Pittsburgh

Grant Proposals and Awards — Jennifer McCahan, Penn State Outreach and Online Education Central Finance