CHARLOTTE – Discovery Place Education Studio has announced the 2015 cohort of its flagship program STEM Fellows, a three-year fellowship that prepares local teachers for dynamic, hands-on learning experiences in order to deliver high-impact STEM lessons in the classroom that prepare students for real world challenges.

With over 70 applications received, 26 educators from North and South Carolina, including one from Wake County and seven from Charlotte, were selected for the 2015 STEM Fellows cohort.

“STEM Fellows is not only about increasing STEM content in the classroom, but more importantly about learning how to engage students in impactful, meaningful conversations that are relevant in our everyday lives,” said Discovery Place Education Studio Director, Stephanie Hathaway.

“There is an urgent need both locally and nationally to support teachers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. Our goal is to equip them with the right tools, technology and confidence that they need to broaden inquiry-based STEM education.”

Flagship offering

STEM Fellows is the flagship offering of Discovery Place Education Studio and is designed to give teachers and educators skills and tools that can be adapted to meet the needs of their own classrooms. Over the three-year program, participants will move from learning about STEM content and science education to becoming community problem solvers and engaging in action-based research in their own classrooms.

STEM Fellows will begin their first year engaging in immersive experiences that focus on supporting growth in pedagogy, before moving into field experiences with STEM-based partners and completing a high level research project.

The 2015 Fellows join a network of Discovery Place’s previous Fellows from the past five years. STEM Fellows participation is by application only. To qualify, applicants must be full-time educators employed in North Carolina or South Carolina public, private, parochial or charter schools. School or district-level facilitators working with STEM educators and employees of informal education institutions (e.g. museums, zoos) are also encouraged to apply.

2015-2016 STEM Fellows Cohort:

North Carolina

Carla Billups                        Buncombe County Schools                          STEM Curriculum Coach                              

Marie Harris                       Charlotte Mecklenburg Library                  ImaginOn

Pamela Weghorst            Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                Ardrey Kell High School

Nancy Betler                      Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                Eastover Elementary School

Ted Miracle                        Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                Endhaven Elementary

Rebecca Grgurina            Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                Kennedy Middle

Jillian Whurr                       Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                River Oaks Academy

Kenyatta Davenport       Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools                Thomasboro Academy                

Kelly Autry                          Crossnore, NC – Private School                   Williams Academy

Jessica Mains                     Crossnore, NC – Private School                   Williams Academy

Stephanie Patton             Henderson County Public Schools            Fletcher Elementary School

Meredith Katz                   Kannapolis City Schools                                Kannapolis Intermediate School              

Amy Minton                       Kannapolis City Schools                                 Kannapolis Middle School          

Renee Jewell                     Newton-Conover City Schools                   Newton-Conover Middle School            

Elizabeth McNamara      NCAIS – Independent Schools                   Gaston Day School

Carrie Hoke                        NC Public Charter School                              Pine Lake Preparatory (Mooresville)

Jennifer Clarke                  NC Public Charter School                              Pine Lake Preparatory (Mooresville)

George Latzos                   NC Public Charter School                              Socrates Academy (Matthews)

Kerri Edwards                    Union County Public Schools                       Marshville Elementary School  

Amy Grzybowski              Union County Public Schools                       Porter Ridge High School            

Andrea Savill                      Union County Public Schools                       Walter Bickett Elementary School

Melissa Schug                    Wake County Public Schools                       Wakefield High school

Maggie Caldwell               Winston Salem/Forsyth County Schools                Clemmons Elementary      

For a full list of other professional development and STEM educator classes, visit