Keni Rienks

Keni Rienks

Science Teacher
My greatest passion is the ocean, and I have dedicated my professional and personal life to advocating for it. I am currently teaching the following high school science courses: Marine, Environmental, Earth, and Honors Physics; I also advise the Green Club and coach the National Ocean Science Bowl team. I volunteer for the executive board of my local Surfrider Foundation chapter, and I am one of the lead organizers of the International Marine Conservation Congress.
Employment Sought:
Permanent Position


Masters of Environmental Management, 2019
Nicholas School of the Environment
Duke University, Durham, NC
Concentration in Environmental Leadership
Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Program, 2006
Western Governors University (2006)
Secondary Science
Bachelor of Arts, 1997 
University of North Carolina at Wilmington
Major in Environmental Science 

Professional Experience

Cape Fear Academy,  Wilmington, NC
Upper School Science Teacher - AP Environmental Science, Honors Physics, Botany, Earth & Space Science, Marine Science. National Ocean Sciences Bowl Coach (Present) - Oversee the academic preparation of two teams of elite high school students to compete in the regional competition. Green Club Advisor (Present) - Coordinate the school-wide recycling program; lead a large group of students that organize environmentally-related community and school service. Science Department Chair (2014 – 2016) - Supervised three high school and two middle school science teachers including evaluations, curriculum alignment, design of 3 new middle school labs, and develop and lead monthly meetings for the department. School Greenhouse Coordinator (2014 – 2016) - Maintained and coordinated usage of the school’s greenhouse and raised beds. 2014 – Present
George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 
Faculty Advisor to the Washington Youth Summit on the Environment - Lead a large group of 300 high school students in a summer program designed to assist in their exploration of a future in the environmental field. 2012 – Present
Woodstock Public School District 200, Woodstock, IL  
High School Science Teacher - AP Environmental Science, Environmental Science, Physical Science, Earth Science, Astronomy, Biology. Green Garden Club Co-Advisor - Developed, implemented and maintained school garden and greenhouse; integrated into 9th through 12th grade curriculum. Substitute Teacher (2001 – 2009). Long-term positions: 1 semester of high school special education, 1 semester of high school biology and physical science. 2001 – 2014
5th International Marine Conservation Congress – 2018, Kuching, Malaysia, sponsored by the Marine Division of the International Society for Conservation Biology
International Marine Kids Congress Chair – Organizing a 5-day congress for delegate and local children to run congruently to the 5th IMCC. Communications Chair, OceansOnline – Responsible for coordinating all marketing and communication efforts of this conference, including organization of social media accounts, marketing of event, speakers and presenters. 2016 – Present
4th International Marine Conservation Congress – 2016, St. Johns, Canada, sponsored by the Marine Division of the International Society for Conservation Biology 
Communications Co-Chair – Responsible for all communication aspects of the conference to the nearly 1,000 delegates and 20 press members; maintained all social media accounts; organized and managed the 7 key plenary speakers and the opening and closing ceremonies; presented 2 workshops about social media and marine science communication; organized 2 community outreach events. 2015 - 2016
Surfrider Foundation, Cape Fear NC Chapter 
Secretary and Rise Above Plastics Coordinator – Primarily responsible for the communication and education regarding our main campaigns to our volunteers including Sand Dune Replenishment and Education, Offshore Drilling and Seismic Testing, Marine Debris, Rise Above Plastics, and Ocean Friendly Gardens. 2014 – Present

Additional Information

Volunteer of the Year – Surfrider Foundation, Cape Fear NC Chapter (2016)
Geoscience Teacher of the Year - State of Illinois - National Geoscience Teachers Association (2013)
Fellowship Award - New Teacher Academy - National Science Teachers Association (2010)
“Positive Social Media – Advocate, Educate & Collaborate”
•    North Carolina Youth Ocean Conservation Summit (2017)
“Social Media in Marine Science Conservation” 
•    5th International Marine Conservation Congress (2016)
“Scientist – Student Partnerships: Connecting via Skype” 
•    5th International Marine Conservation Congress, OceansOnline (2016)
•    Program Coordination
•    Management of People
•    Social Media and Marketing/Communications
•    Curriculum
•    Public Speaking


environmental education
presentation development
project management
volunteer management

Graduation Date

May 2019

Additional Resources

Preferred Location


Preferred Sector

Academic Institution
Federal Government
Non-profit / NGO
Research Institute / Think Tank
State / Local Government