Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Genetics and Bacteriology
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Earth Science, grade 8; Physical Science, Chemistry and Physics, grade 9
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Noyce Teaching Fellow
Name of Noyce institution:
University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh/Fox Valley; ACT2Teach
Current academic or teaching status:
7 years of teaching
School and school district:
Potosi (WI) School District
I attended the University of Wisconsin – Madison for undergraduate Genetics. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to teach high school or college, so I proceeded to the University of Washington – Seattle’s genetics program. After earning a Master’s degree in Genetics, I knew I wanted to teach in high school. I was in an alternative teaching program in Washington and taught for several years before returning to Wisconsin. Not licensed in Wisconsin, I needed to go through a program to add a Physics license. That is when I found the Act2Teach program, an accelerated program that would allow me to add a Physics license while filling the requirements for a Wisconsin teaching license.
Why do you want to teach:
I love inspiring students with interest in science and learning. I like the constant challenge of finding new ways to teach content for different students. Our youth is the future; we need to inspire them to love science when they are young to have hope of having new STEM graduates.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
In Washington, students needed to pass a basic skills test to graduate. In my second year of teaching, I had a senior in chemistry who could not perform long division or work with fractions without a calculator. After being appalled that he had gotten so far without being taught those basic skills, I told him to start coming to me during my lunch (his study hall). I tutored him daily. When he passed the test and graduated, I knew I had made a difference. This young man had slipped through the gaps at a large school and would not have graduated without the extra help.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce program allowed me to get a Wisconsin license with Physics, in addition to the subject areas I had in Washington. I work in a school with a high poverty rate but with a great community. I am able to reach a variety of students, building math and science skills they will use in any career.