Rachel Shefner is the Associate Director of the Center for Science and Mathematics Education (CSME) at Loyola University Chicago and is the Project Director of middle grades professional development programs at Loyola CSME currently funded through the Chicago Community Trust, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, the Big Shoulders Fund, and the Polk Bros. Foundation. Through her work supporting high quality science instruction Dr. Shefner designs and teaches courses for teachers to gain a middle grades science endorsement, is the Science Co-chair of a multi-university partnership project aimed at increasing the rigor of pre-service teacher education in literacy, mathematics and science, has worked on K-12 projects for the Illinois State Board of Education and the National Science Foundation, and was on the curriculum design team for the Gates-funded Loyola-UIC high school transformation project. She is also an active member of the planning group of the Chicago Symposium for Excellence in Teaching Undergraduate Science and Mathematics: Research and Practice, a group which brings nationally renowned speakers to the Chicago area 2-3 times each year to engage with a wide community of scholars.
She earned her M.S. and Ph.D. in immunology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University and her B.S. in genetics and development at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.