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Society Fellows Attend the Intel ISEF 2010

The week of Intel ISEF 2010 was full of amazing opportunities, networking, and learning for several Society Fellows and their students. Some Fellows came with Finalists or student observers, while others were there to experience Intel ISEF and best learn how to help prepare their students to earn the opportunity to compete at future Intel ISEFs.

Three of the 2009 SSP Fellows, Tamica Stubbs, Raymond Nance, and Valdine McLean, and one of our 2010 SSP Fellows, Melanie Schwarzbach, came with Finalists. One of Melanie’s students, Kaylene Ramos, even won the Air Force Second Award of $1,500 for her project “Phytoremediation: Does Age Make a Difference?”

Tamica and Raymond, along with 2009 Society Fellow Connie Wyrick, also brought nine student observers. While these students did not compete, they were able to learn more about the Intel ISEF process, which encourages them to strive to become a Finalist next year. They also volunteered at the Public Education Outreach Day on Thursday, May 13, 2010 to help chaperone local visiting middle school students through a guided tour. On the tour, which involved hands-on science experiences such as dissecting a squid or building a rocket, the student observers shared their excitement for science with the younger group.

The Society Fellows also learned a lot that week. Fellows who did not bring students this year attended the Intel Educator’s Academy sessions where teachers around the world shared their best practices for encouraging innovation. All of the Fellows also attended the Intel ISEF Symposia which offered sessions such as “Science from the Student’s Perspective,” and “A New Outreach Opportunity: Science Research Training Workshop for Teachers and Students.”

The 2009 Fellows also took part in the Symposia during the presentation “Empowering the Teaching Professional through Project Management Planning (PMP).”* The session, presented by Jennifer Carter, Director of Outreach at the Society, covered the Fellows’ experiences creating PMPs during the 2009 Fellows Institute. The Society provides all the new Fellows with this intensive training in Washington, D.C. to help them draft and implement their plans. Here are just a few things the Fellows shared with the attendees:

  • “Writing the PMP was one of the hardest things I have had to do in the Fellows Program—maybe since I started teaching—but it was one of the best things I have done for myself.  I set goals and objectives and usually no one notices that I have accomplished what I set out to do. Having the PMP to remind them of my plan – well that’s the feeling of accomplishment I just didn’t have before.”  ~2009 SSP Fellow Valdine McLean of Lovelock, NV.
  • “Since I have written the PMP during the Fellows Institute, I have been able to apply for and be awarded multiple grants every month. I just take my PMP and cut and paste what I need into the grant application. Everything is already there.” ~2009 SSP Fellow Daniel Newmyer Center, CO.
  • “I feel a responsibility to succeed so I don’t let my other Fellow colleagues down. We are all in this together and are very close despite our geographical differences. We talk regularly via Skype and have teleconferences. I love being an SSP Fellow. ” ~2009 SSP Fellow Connie Wyrick, Tuscumbia MO.

*Jennifer Carter will also present this workshop at the SACNAS conferenceNABT conference and the NSTA Baltimore Regional Conference.

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