STEM PROGRAM

Our STEM program promotes hands-on learning and examines the innovations and challenges that are possible through the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We engage our students with a wide variety of courses and clubs that encourage collaboration, creativity, problem-solving and critical thinking. With state-of-the-art labs, 1:1 laptop program and our unique block system, students have the time and resources to delve deeply into their coursework.

STEM Classes

Flintridge Sacred Heart Named 2020 Top STEM School by Newsweek

Newsweek Top Stem School 2020 We are thrilled to announce that Flintridge Sacred Heart was named a top STEM school in the United States by Newsweek, in association with stem.org.

Nationally, we are ranked 1,029, putting our program in the top 2.5% nationwide. For the state of California, we are ranked 141.

Read the full coverage in the La Cañada Valley Sun. See the full Newsweek rankings.

Honors Scientific Research Students Receive Grant Funding

Our capstone course is an honors scientific research lab that focuses on biotechnology technique and research. With this course, students will develop and conduct their own experiments and present those results to the community. 

In 2020, our students in Honors Scientific Research (aka “Scisearch”) and Engineering for Social Good were awarded $2,750 in Archer STEM Research Grants, which is a STEM initiative sponsored by the Archer School for Girls on the west side.

The institutional support from Flintridge Sacred Heart is the primary source of funding for our students’ projects. 

Archer Stem Research Grant recipients
Meg Kalaw '20 and Emilie Nunn '20 in the lab

Honors Scientific Research

Margaret Kalaw, Carmen Kelley, Abigail Lewis, and Emilie Nunn

"Protection, Pollutants, and Pipes: Immobilization of P. tricornutum for Bioremediation in Wastewater"

Engineering for Social Good

Ann Krappman, Kristen Asmar, Leni Dai, Janna De Vera, Jaden Jones, Darcy Kelley, Alice Long, Lia Ramos, Kaitlyn Thomas, and Alexa Zuch

"Increasing creativity, confidence, and critical thinking skills in high school STEM students through a tech incubator"

Computer Science Awards

College Board Computer Science Female Diversity Award

College Board Female Diversity Computer Science Award

Flintridge Sacred Heart has earned the first College Board AP Computer Science Female Diversity Award for achieving high female representation in AP Computer Science A. Schools honored with the AP Computer Science Female Diversity Award have expanded girls’ access in AP Computer Science courses. Out of more than 18,000 secondary schools worldwide that offer AP courses, Flintrige Sacred Heart is one of only 685 to accomplish this.

Providing female students with access to computer science courses contributes to gender parity in the industry’s high-paying jobs and drives innovation, creativity, and competition. According to UNESCO’s Institute of Statistics data, less than 30% of the world’s researchers are women; in North America and Western Europe, it’s just 32%. Research shows women are more likely to pursue computer science if they’re given the opportunity to explore it in high school.

National Center for Women & Information Technology's Award for Aspirations in Computing

In 2020, twelve students and one teacher received recognition by the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) Aspirations in Computing awards program. 

Award Winners
Student recipients of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) Aspirations in Computing awards program. 
Our award recipients include:
  • LA Regional Award Winner: Maddy Freeman
  • LA Regional Award Honorable Mention Winners: Natasha Mertens, Gabby Anich, Emily Sam, Emily Yuan, Leni Dai, and Emily Cupo
  • LA Regional Award Rising Star Winners: Madeline Gutierrez, Jojo Zhou, Beatriz Gimenez Cerezo, Michelle Zhou, Alyn Panggabean
  • California Los Angeles Affiliate Educator Award Winner: Jeannie Finley
As members of the Aspirations in Computing community, our students are able to join a network for technical women in computing and engineering who receive benefits such as private invitations to virtual and in-person meetups, visibility for technical achievements, computing outreach opportunities, hands-on activities for exploring computer science concepts, exclusive access to scholarships, internships, job opportunities, and more.

stem classes at fsha
Ms. Finley teaches students how to use the 3D printer

Teacher Jeannie Finley received an honorable mention California: LA & OC Metro 2018  Affiliate NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Educator Award. The award recognizes Ms. Finley for her demostrated commitment to encouraging you women's aspirations in computing.

8 Reasons to Explore a STEM Career According to a Girl

by Hannah Scott '17

As citizens of the digital age, our lives are increasingly dependent on technology— we cannot leave the house without our smartphones and if our WiFi connection is not strong enough, chaos ensues. However, the more we rely on our phones and computers, fewer people actually understand the principles that drive technology.

8 Reasons for a STEM Career
"As a teen girl entering the tech world, I can tell you that [choosing a STEM career] is the best decision you will ever make" —Hannah
My journey from an oblivious consumer to a producer of software was unexpected and unique. It all started when I signed up for Flintridge Sacred Heart’s Robotics I class. Inspired by the popular TV series Grey’s Anatomy, I was convinced that I would pursue medicine and become the next Dr. Christina Yang. Hoping to further my knowledge of the human anatomy, I signed up for sports medicine for my sophomore year. I needed to pick another semester-long elective to complete my schedule, so I decided on robotics because I had heard there was no homework.

Read on for Hannah's reasons why you should consider a STEM career!

STEM Co-Curriculars

Code Crew

The Code Crew is a community of students who wish to explore programming for web design, gaming, application development, robotics or just for the fun of it! It is open to all students at any skill level.

FSHA's Code Crew members demo coding activities during the annual Club Fair
“Code Crew has empowered me to learn more programming languages, which will give me a head start in my computer science classes in college. It’s created a supportive environment for me to deepen my understanding of programming while encouraging others to do the same.” – Hannah Scott ’17

Tech Team

The Tech Team is a group of students who provide tech assistance throughout the school year and advise the faculty on tech issues from the student perspective.

Tinker Thursdays

Sponsored by the library, Tinker Thursdays occur after school. Interested students can attend for an opportunity to experiment with Little Bits (electronic building blocks), Arduino (open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software) and Tinkercad (3D design and printing app).

Boeing Internship

FSHA has an ongoing relationship with The Boeing Company to offer summer internships to rising seniors who are interested in exploring or gaining experience in science and engineering fields. The summer internships take place on site at Boeing's El Segundo campus over the course of eight weeks in June, July, and August. Students are matched with Boeing employee mentors and get individual training and attention and contribute to actual, ongoing engineering projects as part of the Boeing Engineering team. Internships are also flexible enough to accommodate other activities such as sports programs or family vacations.

Engineering at FSHA

Students in Mr. Buxman's engineering class were tasked with developing prototypes that solved some common problems.

Here we have two students demonstrating their automatic pancake flipping spatula.


Noticing that trash cans in cities are often overflowing, two students developed trashcan prototype that could release trash into an underground tank when full.

STEM Faculty

List of 15 members.

  • Michelle Amos 

    626-685-8300
  • Simone Butera 

    Mathematics Teacher
    626-685-8328
  • Ty Buxman 

    Science Teacher
    626-685-8378
  • Jeannie Finley 

    Director of Academic Technology, Online Programs Manager, Computer Science Department Chair
    626-685-8529
  • Carol Jones 

    Mathematics Teacher
    626-685-8300
  • Elizabeth Krider 

    Science Teacher
    626-685-8368
  • Jim Lau 

    Mathematics Teacher
    626-685-8342
  • Leslie Miller 

    Science Dept. Chair / Science Teacher/ Advisor
    626-685-8300
  • Kirk Nishiyama 

    Mathematics Teacher; Cross-Country Coach; Softball Coach
    626-685-8324
  • John Robb 

    Mathematics Teacher
    626-685-8322
  • Robert Sanderson 

    Physical Science Teacher
    626-685-8300
  • Diane Sarkarati 

    Science Teacher
    626-685-8556
  • Mary Schnieders Monohan 97

    Science Teacher/Coach/Advisor
    626-685-8300
  • Kayla Tennity 

    Science Teacher / Boarding Faculty
    626-685-8319
  • Christine Wheaton 

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy is an all girls' Catholic, Dominican, independent, college-preparatory day and boarding high school in the hills of La Cañada Flintridge. Overlooking Pasadena, FSHA educates girls from Los Angeles, Southern California and around the world for a life of faith, integrity and truth. 

Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy

440 St. Katherine Drive
La Cañada Flintridge, CA 91011
High School Office: 626-685-8300
Admissions: 626-685-8521

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