I decided to pursue teaching as a profession because I desired a career with opportunities to work with youth and eliminate educational inequity in science.”

Destinee’s Story

Teaching Discipline


Why Chemistry

“I was attracted to chemistry because of its interdisciplinary nature. I truly loved all subjects in school and by studying chemistry I still have the opportunity to do an extensive amount of critical thinking, reading, writing, and mathematics to solve interesting problems and make sense of how the world works.”

Professional Experience

During her undergraduate career, Destinee worked as a chemistry and biology peer tutor, a small group learning facilitator and a group exercise instructor. Additionally, Destinee spent four weeks studying abroad in Carpi, Italy. Designed for pre-service teachers, the program afforded her the opportunity to co-teach English lessons for middle school students.

Through the Winthrop Initiative for STEM Educators, she explored research and secondary chemistry teaching. She later explored the field of chemistry education research as a participant in the National Science Foundation-Research Experience for Undergraduates Program (NSF-REU) at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

Destinee designed and tested an observation rubric to evaluate inquiry-based chemistry instruction, which she presented at the 2014 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Dallas, Texas. Destinee also conducted research on the characterization of copper (I) binding thermodynamics to various small molecules. She presented her findings at several meetings and conferences, including the 2013 Southeastern Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Atlanta, Ga., where she received top honors in the undergraduate competition.

Volunteer Experience

As President of the Student Affiliates of the American Chemical Society at Winthrop University, Destinee organized science outreach programs for local schools and organizations. She is a long-time American Cancer Society Relay for Life volunteer who has served as Team Captain for several years.

While in college, Destinee provided weekly dance lessons for youth who were victims of abuse, abandonment, or neglect. Additionally, she served as Assistant Coach for an organization that provided bi-weekly character development and opportunities for physical activity for middle school girls. Destinee is a proud former contestant who volunteers with the Miss South Carolina Organization.

In 2014, Destinee became a published author (Philipp, S.; Johnson, D.; Yezierski, E. Development of a Protocol to Evaluate the Use of Representations in Secondary Chemistry Instruction. Chem. Educ. Res. Pract., 2014, 15, 777 – 786.).


Destinee enjoys college football, group fitness, dance, and playing the piano.

Academic Background

  • Stanford University (Master of Arts in Education)
  • Winthrop University (Bachelor of Science in Chemistry)