Sandra Upite is originally from Perrysburg, Ohio. She holds a bachelor’s degree in botany from Miami University and a master’s degree in physical geography from Northern Arizona University. Ms. Upite is currently a science teacher at Mingus Union High School, a position she has held since 2013. She is also the school's STEM liaison and works closely with the community through projects including Trout in the Classroom, Project WET, and Arizona WILD. Ms. Upite became a teacher because of her love of learning and her passion for helping people and has now been a teacher for 11 years. She was the mentor teacher for Yu Aihua from Dalian, China.