Ms. Pam Vandivort

Phone: (520) 696-6774


Degrees and Certifications:

B.S. in Biochemistry/Biology, USCM.Ed. in Curriculum Design and Instruction, PSUAZ 7-12 Teaching Certificate for General Science, CTE-biotechnology, Chemistry, Biology, Physics

Ms. Pam Vandivort

Welcome to Ms. V’s website!

My name is Pam Vandivort, and I teach 8th grade science (room 508) and 6,7,8th STEM (room 509).  I also mentor students who choose to participate in the Science Fair.  This is my 5th year at La Cima, and my 8th year of teaching.   I am married to my husband of 29 years, Andrew, and we have two sons, Stephen (a graduate of UA) and Nathan (a Freshman at Embry-Riddle).  Prior to becoming a teacher, I was a Research and Development scientist in the Biotechnology industry.  I was a founding employee of Oro Valley’s Roche-Ventana cancer diagnostics company.

Defining Moment in Education

I coached middle school Robotics competition teams for 7 years. In the midst of my third year, I realized that spending my time working and interacting with kids was more meaningful and satisfying than anything I’d done previously, so I went back to school for a teaching certificate and master’s degree.

Core Educational Belief

I believe that each child is a unique individual who needs a secure, caring and stimulating atmosphere in which to grow and mature, intellectually, emotionally and socially. It is my desire as an educator to help students meet their full potential in these areas by providing an environment that is safe, supports inquiry and critical thinking, and involves collaboration.


Prior Experience

Prior to teaching at La Cima, I taught 8th grade science and high school Biotechnology at Sonoran Science Academy.  I also coached the FLL and FTC Robotics competition teams at SSA. 

Prior to becoming a teacher, I worked as a Research and Development Scientist at Ventana Medical Systems (now Roche-Ventana) in Oro Valley. I developed both machine platforms and their accompanying reagents for use in cancer diagnostics.

Briefly, before starting at Ventana, I worked as a Research Associate in the Biochemistry Department at the UA. There, I worked on an Alzheimer’s Disease project, by isolating enzymes that are believed to be involved in the disease process.


Professional Accomplishments

  • I hold 7 USA and International patents through Ventana Medical Systems
  • I hold 2 patents with former Robotics teams
  • I have published professionally (scientific journals) and personally (adoption articles)
  • Edison Award Gold for STEM Teacher of the Year, 2012
  • World Champion FLL Robotics Coach (1st Place, Research Project) in 2011
  • AZ State Champion FLL Robotics Coach (1st Place All Around), 2010
  • AZ SARSEF Science Fair Awards: Outstanding Achievement and Most Innovative Teacher, 2015
  • AZ SARSEF Science Teacher of the Year, 2017
  • OM Technical/Robotics Team Coach: Regional & State Wiinners, World Qualifiers, 2017