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Catherine Bale
Director West Point Center for STEM Education

Catherine Bale is the Director of Outreach for the West Point Center for STEM Education. She holds a B.A. degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri and a M.S. degree in Education from Long Island University.


She has served as the coordinator of the West Point Bridge Design Contest for more than 10 years and spent the last year launching CSE. Additionally, she teaches childhood education classes at Mount Saint Mary College. Previous to her work as a teacher, in educational outreach and in higher education, Ms. Bale was a television news producer and a professional photographer.


As a certified New York State teacher, Ms. Bale’s unique combination of classroom and mass media experience have provided her with a unique platform to organize and initiate quality STEM outreach programs. She has a passion for technology and is an advocate for finding creative ways to engage students and inspire them in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Dr. Tom Lainis
Professor Department of Physics and Nuclear Engineering

Tom Lainis is a Professor of Physics in the Department of Physics and Nuclear Engineering.  He served 30 years in the Army beginning in 1971 as a tank platoon leader in Germany, company commander at Fort Hood, Deputy G3, 1st Armored Division, and culminating as Deputy Head of the Department of Physics at West Point.  He returned to the Department as a civilian professor in 2008.  


Tom earned a BS from West Point in 1971, a MS in Physics from MIT in 1975, a MS in Computer Science from PINY in 1984, a PhD in Physics from MIT in 1991, and a New York State certification in teaching from STAC in 2000.


He has been an active member of the American Association of Physics Teachers since 1991.  Working under COL Jim Stith, he became involved in Physics Education Research as a coordinator for the National Science Foundation (NSF) sponsored undergraduate curricular development review, Introductory University Physics Program.  It was easy for him to expand his interests to STEM Outreach in which he has helped bring the joy of physics to elementary and middle school students.


While he has been an avid supporter of the Center for STEM Education since the Center’s inception, this year he has joined the Center’s Leadership.