Ileana Mendez joined UT High School in June 2021 as the Testing Services Coordinator after serving for 6 years as an assistant principal in Austin and El Paso school districts. Ms. Mendez has worked on behalf of students, teachers and families for 14 years as an educator in the Texas public school system. Throughout her career, Ms. Mendez has sought to expand science education as a sheltered instruction high school teacher, curriculum specialist for English Learners, Instructional specialist and administrator. Ms. Mendez believes deeply that science education is a broad frontier for student empowerment and community change because it fosters natural curiosity, encourages exploration and challenges students to research and solve complex problems. Ms. Mendez continues to encourage student inquiry through her service with UT High School.