Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Atmospheric Science, Geography, Secondary Education
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Secondary Physics, Earth Science, grades 6-12
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Master Teaching Fellow
Name of Noyce institution:
University of Kansas
Current academic or teaching status:
School and school district:
Student teaching (Spring 2012)
After completing my Bachelor’s degree in Atmospheric Science, I decided that the type of careers this degree would offer didn’t suit me, so I enrolled in a graduate program in the Geography Department at the University of Kansas. There, I taught several sections of a laboratory science class, and furthered the breadth and depth of my scientific understanding. The research demands of academia didn’t suit me, so I re-analyzed my priorities and enrolled in the Graduate Licensure Program at the University of Kansas.
Why do you want to teach:
The thing that separates the human race from all other animals is our ability to communicate our knowledge and memory using language. Teaching and learning are as vital to the human experience as anything else. Who wouldn’t want to be involved in that? I specifically wish to teach the sciences because I think this type of knowledge is incredibly vital to future generations in our country. Establishing core scientific knowledge is vital to understanding the way humans interact with technology and the environment.
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
As a teaching assistant for atmospheric science classes, I had lots of interaction with students, but my ability to impact the curriculum was very limited. I remember being primarily affected by two things. The first was the immense struggles that many students had with a 100 level collegiate science course. The second was the handful of occasions where struggling students would react positively to a lesson. I noticed an immediate improvement in their work, and it was almost as if I could see a light bulb turn on above their head.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
The Noyce program has been fantastic for me. The area where I will be looking to teach is chock full of schools which meet the criteria for the Noyce scholarship. As someone who has been in college for a few extra years and who has chosen a career that isn’t exactly renowned for its high salaries, I am excited for the opportunity for a significant portion of my debt to be forgiven.