"I grew up close to the water, so I had a love for marine science," the Vero Beach, Fla., native said.
Now a biology teacher at Woodstock High School, Ms. Forsyth shares her fascination for the natural world with her students.
"I used to think that I might teach for a while then do something else later, but I got hooked," the Woodstock resident said. "I made the correct career choice."
But for the first time in her 15-year career, the 38-year-old will get to conduct scientific research.
Recently, Ms. Forsyth was selected to participate in the Siemens Teachers as Researchers program through the Siemens Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics Academy.
This summer, Ms. Forsyth will spend two weeks, all-expenses paid, working with a small group of educators and scientists on a short-term project at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.
"This is the chance of a lifetime," she said. "It's like I've picked up a missed opportunity."
Ms. Forsyth will also receive a $300 grant to purchase equipment for her classroom after the program.
Out of more than 200 applicants for the opportunity, only 20 were selected.
"I didn't think my chances were good," she said. "I was beyond excited (to get in). I was screaming and jumping up and down. I feel incredibly fortunate."
Even though she has not been assigned a project or scientist yet, Ms. Forsyth said she hopes it will involve Quorum sensing, a study of bacteria to find chemical alternatives to antibiotics; or biofuels.
"Quorum sensing is the most cutting-edge type of research now," she said. "My students are going to be focusing on it next year."
Along with being excited about fulfilling a personal dream, Ms. Forsyth said she is looking forward to bringing what she learns back to her classroom.
"I don't teach from the textbook," she said. "It's a resource, and so is the Internet, but we don't use them all the time."
Utilizing current and ongoing studies, Ms. Forsyth said she tries to inject as much real-world research and findings into the standards as possible.
To allow students who share her scientific curiosity to go beyond the basics, Ms. Forsyth is even teaching a science research course next year.
Vanessa Suarez, the school's assistant principal for math and science, said the administration is excited any time a teacher receives enrichment from outside the school.
"She puts a lot of time and effort into research for her students," said Ms. Suarez. "We're definitely excited to have her on staff and see what she brings back to the classroom."