Salinas joined the County College or Morris (CCM) full-time faculty in 2015. She teaches General Biology and Human Biology. Prior to that, she taught General Biology, Life Sciences, Ecology and Marine Biology for eight years at Brookdale Community College.
She also brings extensive hands-on experience to her classroom as a result of her previous work as an environmental field instructor with the Marine Science Consortium at Sandy Hook. She began that work after earning her bachelors’ degree in biology from The College of New Jersey.
“After I earned my undergraduate degree, I was working with young children at the consortium who would be bussed in from all over the state,” she says. “Some of them had never seen the ocean before. We would go out and do some seining, collect marine organisms, identify them and talk about the ecology of the area and the environmental significance of the organisms.”
It was that experience which made her realize she wanted to teach. “Working with small kids, I began to figure out that I liked teaching and it made me realize that teaching is where I was meant to be.”
She went on to earn master’s degree in biology from the University of Nebraska at Kearny.
One of benefits of teaching Salinas enjoys most is that it allows her to keep up to date in the fields of biology and ecology, as she also is able to contribute to the education and ongoing development of her students.
And even though she drives up to three hours a day to teach at CCM from her home in Jackson, her passion for what she does far outweighs the length of that commute.
“CCM is worth it,” says Salinas, who leaves her home at 5:30 a.m. in order to teach her 8 a.m. class. “The students are very respectful, hardworking and they want to learn.”