Melanie Fine


Melanie Fine is an invested Hazzan (Cantor, in English) with over 20 years' experience. She was graduated from the Cantorial School of the Jewish Theological Seminary and has served congregations in New York, Rhode Island, Indiana and California. She has trained thousands in chanting Torah, Haftarah, the Megillot and in davening. She currently serves as the cantor of Congregation Har-El in Palm Desert, California.

In addition, Hazzan Fine is an award-winning high school science educator, encouraging and enabling countless students to pursue careers in the scientific fields, especially in chemistry, physics and engineering. She has taught in both the public and private sectors, and has been a driving force in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education long before it became a political charge and household word.

Fine earned her B.A. in Chemistry from Cornell University in 1987, studying under such luminaries as Dr. Roald Hoffmann, winner of the 1981 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, and poet and author Robert Morgan. She received a Masters in Sacred Music and Cantorial Investiture from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York in 1997, and has earned writing and education certifications from UCLA and Chapman University, respectively. She has also studied Physics Modeling Instruction at Florida International University, and has attended by invitation, physics education professional development at University of California, Riverside. She writes a blog on science, offers online chemistry education at, and runs the Facebook page Science Matters. Her writings have been featured on the Huffington Post blog, among others.

In Search of Science Role Models

'Don't Know Much About Science'

Among her many accolades, Fine has been named Amgen Fellow of the National Science Teachers' Association (NSTA) and received the prestigious American Vacuum Society's educators' grant. She lives with her 8-year-old son and young scientist, Max.

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Courses taught by Melanie Fine