Wednesday, February 21, 2024

2018 Awardees

Group picture of 2018 PTW Awardees
2018 PTW Awardees

Girls in Engineering After School Program Roger LaGesse, Deborah Marshall – Granby High School, Norfolk, Virginia.

The Granby High School Girls In Engineering After School Program was started to try and address the lack of young ladies in technology and engineering classes, thereby addressing the lack of women in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) related careers, Granby High School thought outside the box. The program runs during the entire school year period of 9 months, September through June. Specific STEM program activities include: 

  • Robotics that may lead to an international competition. Marine Advance Technology Education (MATE) Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV). http://www.marinetech.org/rov-competition 
  • Students work site visits to observe engineers in action (field trips during National engineering week (February). 
  • Field trips to attend an engineering career event in the Hampton Roads area and Old Dominion University (ODU) and University of Virginia (UVA) Schools Of Engineering. 
  • Guest speakers from the ODU Society of Women Engineers, Norfolk State University, Tidewater Community College, and engineers from area businesses. 
  • Project mentoring partnership with Old Dominion University School of Engineering. 

Using Inquiry-Based Learning to Develop a Workplace Ready Biotechnology GraduateStacie Deaver – Virginia Western Community College, Roanoke, Virginia

In 2015, VWCC launched a Career Studies Certificate (CSC) in Biotechnology to expand our educational offerings in support of this up-and-coming field in the Roanoke Valley. The primary goal of the CSC is to prepare students for the work force and/or their future education though integrated, inquiry-based learning opportunities that promote content knowledge in their field and workplace readiness skills. Students that complete the CSC are more confident, not only in their science and math skills, but also in their ability to be successful in the workplace and in workplace interactions. To accomplish this goal, the curriculum integrates important scientific concepts and techniques with workplace readiness skills, such as professionalism, time management, and teamwork, in order to help students succeed in their future endeavors. This program not only improves student understanding and participation in STEM fields through hands-on learning, it also provides them with the opportunity to become successful participants in the workplace after completion. 

Enhancing Undergraduate Learning of Gene Expression – Kristian M. Hargadon- Hampden-Sydney College – Prince Edward County, Virginia.

Based on the need to improve student understanding of gene expression, this laboratory module, aims to promote undergraduate understanding of gene expression and introduce students to qualitative and quantitative methods for studying this critical process at both the single-cell and population levels. 

Learning Across Virginia Penny McCallum – Virginia Tech Southwest Center, Abingdon, Virginia.

In June 2015, Director McCallum lead twenty-five teachers from southwest Virginia on a five-day bus trip entitled “Learning across Virginia,” an educational learning adventure of a life time. The first stop was Virginia Tech, followed by Richmond, Newport News, Norfolk, Virginia Beach and the Eastern Shore. At each stop teachers participated in STEM activities that broadened their global picture and provided them with information to share with their students. This was real- life experiential learning in places where teachers observed highly skilled technicians incorporating STEM into their work. The trip included visits to the NASA Langley, the Living Museum, Air and Space Museum, the Aquarium, Nauticus, the battleship Wisconsin, NASA’s Wallops Island Flight Facility and Virginia Beach.

Using Hops as a Tool to Integrate Research into the Introductory Biology Classroom – Michael J. Wolyniak- Hampden-Sydney College, Prince Edward County, Virginia.

Pedagogical models that generate classroom research experiences, accessible to students from all backgrounds are needed in order to further advance the overall state of American undergraduate life science education. This is a model of a semester-long research experience for introductory biology students at Hampden-Sydney College utilizing the common hop as its central organism. Hops represent a commercially relevant, easily accessible, relatively inexpensive model system that can serve as a source for developing several lines of basic or applied research questions. In our model, students focused on the microbes that can be found on hops plants to design and implement research questions seeking to understand how to better control hops pathogens and manage commercial hops growth.

PROGRESS: PromotingRenewable energy research On the Grid to create a Responsible and Engaging STEM workforce in Solar Sustainability across the CommonwealthPadmanabhan Seshaiyer, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia.

Project PROGRESS is a new initiative to create a unique first-time multidisciplinary program that provides an ideal opportunity for participants including students, faculty and the workforce in the state, to develop innovative ideas to grow and sustain renewable energy research in the Commonwealth of Virginia. This proposed program has helped to provide a platform to study, analyze and assess the impact of renewable energy across the state through a curriculum that was hands-on, experiential and project-based. This project also helped to promote the much-needed awareness of the importance of community-based solar energy by engaging various stake-holders in studying its impact and assessing its benefits while supporting and encouraging solar energy growth in Virginia. Project PROGRESS was initiated through a Dominion Foundation Grant to promote renewable solar energy through student driven design research techniques.

Virginia Initiative for Science Teaching and Achievement Elementary Literacy, Integrated with Science at VCU and UVA (VISTA ELIS at VCU and UVA) – Elizabeth Edmondson and Jennifer Maeng, Virginia Commonwealth University and University of Virginia. Richmond,Virginia and Charlottesville Virginia.

The Virginia Initiative for Science Teaching and Achievement, Elementary Literacy Integrated with Science (VISTA ELIS) at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia provides professional development to support K-8 teachers from high-needs schools (as defined by the Virginia Department of Education) in integrating science and literacy instruction within a problem-based learning  context. The Next Generation Science Standards Crosscutting Concepts (patterns, matter and energy, cause and effect) serve as the science content instruction foundation. The school-based, sustained, integrated, iterative professional development is supported by the U.S. Department of Education’s Math Science Partnership (MSP) program. 

TRANSITIONS: Transforming Mathematics Instruction Through Mathematical Modeling, Algebraic Thinking and Proportional Reasoning: Teaching and Assessing Understanding – Jennifer Suh – George Mason University- Fairfax County, Virginia.

TRANSITIONS is a VDOE Mathematics Science Partnership program between faculty from the COMPLETE Center at George Mason University (GMU) and nine school divisions that included Arlington County, Frederick County, Fairfax County, Fauquier County, Loudoun County, Manassas City, Manassas Park, Prince William County, and the Virginia Council for Private Education. The focus of this project was on transition across grade levels, elementary to middle and middle to high with a goal to a) Deliver content–focused professional development and coaching, aligned to the 2016 Virginia SOL for mathematics content classroom strategies, and student assessment standards; b) Provide targeted opportunities for meaningful mathematics learning to underrepresented populations to increase the academic achievement of special education, LEP and economically disadvantaged students; c) Develop need-based on-site coach-facilitated Lesson Study and e-learning professional and curricular resources through a collaborative network.

Building Bridges across the Elementary Curriculum using Argument Driven Inquiry – Joanna Garner- The Center for Educational Partnerships, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia.

Bridges is a partnership between The Old Dominion University Center for Educational Partnerships (TCEP) and school divisions in Virginia’s Tidewater Region 2. The program draws from best practices literature on reform-oriented science professional development and strives to implement recommendations from a large-scale evaluation of Virginia Mathematics and Science Partnership projects. Importantly, it also includes cutting edge innovations, such as the first ever elementary school level application of an evidence-based instructional model called Argument Driven Inquiry. Through professional development and instructional coaching for elementary teachers, the program seeks to meet goals related to Math Science Partnership definitions of teacher quality.

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