Dan Baker takes on science at Foothill


Dan Baker, the new science teacher. Credit: Ethan Crouch / The Foothill Dragon Press

Thea Wulff, Writer

You may have seen him around campus or as a student teacher in Biology—but this time, he’s back for good. After years of previous experience in the field, Baker has decided to extend his passion for science by teaching chemistry and BioScience Survey here at Foothill.

Inspired by many of his teachers, Baker first found his interest for sciences in high school. He hopes to create this same effect on the students at Foothill.

“I love high school science just in general,” Baker said. “That’s where I got turned on to science, and I had those high school teachers that I loved and still am friends with, so that’s where I felt like I could make a difference.” 

After high school, Mr. Baker got his undergrad at University of California, Davis, then completed graduate school at San Diego State University, where he studied Cholesterol Metabolism and got his Masters. He worked with a small group at Amgen for many years, and eventually managed a clinical biomarkers genomics group. Because of his background at Amgen, Baker also has a Career Technical Education credential, which is considered as sufficient comprehension of a subject and experience in a certain industry and will be beneficial to many programs at Foothill.

“When I started teaching, I had to remember a lot of the basic stuff that I hadn’t thought of in a long time,” Baker recalls.

He is enthusiastic about going back to these basics, like photosynthesis, and is welcoming a break from studying big pharmaceutical sciences.



More recently, Baker has taught General Bio Lecture and Lab at both Ventura College (VC) and Oxnard College and is currently teaching Anatomy Lab at VC once a week.

While he enjoys teaching at the college level, he looks forward to forming meaningful connections with the students at Foothill that will last much longer than previous relationships he’s had with students.

He compares high school to the college level and explains, “I’m excited to get to know the students because at the college, they kind of come in and come out, and you don’t have the relationships that you have here.”

Baker also leads an exciting life outside of school, spending time with his family as the youngest of seven kids and as a musician. He has been interested in music since the age of 8, playing the keys in a band that performs locally.

What do you think?