Pronunciation: (ruh-JEE-nuh sahn-TY-ah-goh)
Title: Curricula Manager
As Curricula Manager, Regina Santiago develops and maintains the resources housed in the Food Education Center. Regina works to ensure that educators have access to Food Education through curricula and resources that are culturally affirming, developmentally appropriate, and academically aligned.
Regina first heard about Pilot Light in 2020 and immediately felt a strong connection to their mission. She was a Food Education Fellow for the 2021-2022 school year, and has stayed connected to Pilot Light ever since. Regina is passionate about the transformative power of Food Education. She thinks of food as a highly engaging lens for students. Through Food Ed, students can explore a multitude of topics – not just in terms of academic subjects like math and literacy, but also broader ideas of identity, community, environmental stewardship, and social justice.
Regina is a proud immigrant and third culture kid who lived in the Philippines and Indonesia before coming to the United States. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Macalester College and Master of Arts in Teaching from Hamline University. She also holds a Minnesota teacher licensure for Pre-K to 8th grade. Prior to her work at Pilot Light, Regina was an elementary educator for twelve years. She also writes essays and picture books. Regina is thrilled to combine her passions for food, curriculum design, and creative writing in her role as Curricula Manager!
Favorite Food Education Standard: FES #7: We can advocate for food choices and changes that impact ourselves, our communities, and our world.
To me, FES 7 is the most empowering and hopeful standard. It beautifully blends all the other standards and inspires us all to work for a better world. When I was teaching, I took every opportunity to help my students see that they had power and agency, and that the world needed them to use their voices. I believe with all my heart that Food Education is one of the most powerful ways we can build communities that are healthier in every sense of the word.
A favorite food memory or recipe:
Lugaw is the Filipino version of congee. Whenever I make it, it calls up a montage of memories. My mom making it for me whenever I was sick growing up, eating it at food courts with my dad, to making it in the college dorms during my first winter in Minnesota. It’s a very humble and simple dish that will forever be a source of comfort and connection to home for me. Link: https://www.kawalingpinoy.com/arroz-caldo/