Verizon to Sponsor STEM Leadership Conference for Teachers
JONESBORO – The Arkansas State University Delta STEM Education Center, in conjunction with the Colleges of Science and Mathematics and Education and Behavioral Science, will host a STEM Leadership Conference for K-12 Teachers on Friday, July 10, at the Delta Center for Economic Development.
The conference is sponsored by Verizon.
The group of approximately 50 mentor and novice teachers will participate in two whole group keynote presentations and small group concurrent sessions. Nine 1.25 hour workshops, in groups of three concurrent sessions, will consist of hands-on activities in current science/math, technology, and engineering (STEM areas), and topics given at the K-4, 5-8, and 9-12 grade bands.
Twenty-five mentor teachers have been invited based on their prior experience in A-State graduate courses, professional development training, professional organization participation and leadership, their status as National Board Certified, or nomination for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science or Mathematics Teaching. Each mentor teacher was allowed to invite one novice teacher from their district to accompany them to the conference.
Dr. Jennifer Bouldin, director of A-State’s Ecotoxicology Research Center, will lead hands-on aquatic toxicology investigations, Victor Dreier, Arkansas and Oklahoma director of school engagement for Project Lead The Way will direct the engineering activities, and Terri Sue Smith, Nettleton High School technology instructional facilitator, will guide teachers in cutting-edge technology explorations.
The catered luncheon will include a keynote address by Rose Stuckey Kirk, a 1984 alumna of the Department of Communication at A-State.
Kirk is chief corporate social responsibility officer at Verizon. She also serves as president of the Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon. There she leads a team dedicated to solving critical issues in education, delivering technology and hands-on experiences designed to spark a passion for learning, especially in those students who need it the most.
Dr. Suzanne Mitchell, Arkansas STEM Coalition executive director, will present the morning keynote address. She also serves as the teacher quality enhancement grant program manager for the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.
Mitchell will focus on the state of STEM education and STEM employment in Arkansas. Afterward, she will lead a focus group discussion about current K-12 STEM needs. A written report of these findings will be submitted to Verizon, the teachers’ administrators, and other stakeholders.
Dr. Cynthia Miller, director of the Delta STEM Education Center at A-State, will lead a focus group in which novice teachers are able to ask questions of the mentor teachers, presenters, and facilitators. This expert advice should help pave the way for the year-long mentoring activities in which the mentor/novice teacher teams will participate. Teachers will receive Kindle Fire tablets, A-State backpacks, 16 gigabyte flash drives, and information about STEM/STEM education programs.
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