COLUMBUS, OH—A NASA intern, a cancer researcher, a forensic scientist in criminal investigations, a former engineer in the automotive industry: these experts in science, technology, engineering, math and medicine (the STEMM fields) are among the 79 Woodrow Wilson Ohio Teaching Fellows named today at the Ohio Statehouse by the Ohio Board of Regents, the Ohio Department of Education, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. (See attachments above for list of bios and factsheet on the 2014 class of Fellows.)
The Woodrow Wilson Ohio Teaching Fellowship recruits top-quality teacher candidates to teach math and science in high-need Ohio schools. The Fellows include both accomplished career changers and outstanding recent college graduates, all with previous STEMM backgrounds. They complete a rigorous master’s program that includes a full year of practical experience in local classrooms, then commit to teach for three years with ongoing mentoring and support.
“The Woodrow Wilson Fellows will bring additional firepower to one of the most noble professions,” Board of Regents Chancellor John Carey said. “It is crucial that students in our high-need schools have only the best and brightest teachers to help them prepare for the future, and the Woodrow Wilson Fellows fit the bill. With all of our efforts at the Board of Regents to ensure that Ohio’s students are prepared for the workforce, particularly in STEMM and other high-demand fields, the importance of their work cannot be overstated. Their preparation and experience will give students access to individuals with unique talents and experiences.”
Each Fellow receives a $30,000 stipend while completing the teacher education program at one of seven participating Ohio universities: John Carroll University, The Ohio State University, Ohio University, the University of Akron, the University of Cincinnati, the University of Dayton and the University of Toledo. These institutions have reworked their programs to offer teacher candidates both the yearlong clinical experience and specific teaching approaches for the STEMM fields. For a factsheet on the Fellowship and a map of participating universities, visit www.ohiohighered.org/woodrow.
School districts work in partnership with the participating universities to provide the year of practice, as well as continued mentoring. Districts working with the seven campuses in 2014–15 will include Akron, Athens, Alexander, Canton, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Logan-Hocking, Nelsonville-York, South-Western, Toledo, Tri-County Vocational, Trimble, and Vinton County.
“I am leading Ohio’s education system today because of one outstanding teacher who believed in me. I know high-quality teachers move the needle,” said Richard A. Ross, superintendent of public instruction. “These elite scholars are starting their education careers with impressive career credentials already in hand. As we add teaching to their skills, I believe they will inspire our most disadvantaged students and help blaze paths for them to lucrative STEMM careers.”
The 2014 class of teacher candidates—the state’s fourth—will be ready to enter their own classrooms in fall 2015. This year’s group brings to 288 the total number of Fellows named in Ohio since the program’s 2010 launch. Program administrators project that the Fellows to date will touch the lives of nearly 30,000 students each year.
“These Fellows are really impressive people, and they are going to receive some of the strongest teaching preparation available,” said Arthur Levine, president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. “The campuses and districts working with them are creating new models of teacher education. So not only will this year’s Fellows change countless lives, they are also part of an effort to change the way teachers nationwide learn to help their students succeed.”
The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, based in Princeton, N.J., created the Fellowship and administers the program in five states—Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, and Georgia. More information about the Woodrow Wilson Ohio Teaching Fellowship is available at http://woodrow.org/ohio.
The program in Ohio is made possible with federal Race to the Top funds as well as commitments from six Ohio funders, including The Cleveland Foundation, George Gund Foundation, Martha Holden Jennings Foundation, GAR Foundation, Battelle Memorial Institute and The Battelle Fund at the Columbus Foundation, plus matching funds provided by the campuses. Additional support for the program came from the state’s Choose Ohio First program.
In each of the five states where the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship now operates, a blend of private and public support has been key to the creation of the program, as have gubernatorial leadership and statewide coalition-building. Several additional states are in discussion with the Woodrow Wilson Foundation about creating their own programs, said Levine.
About the Ohio Board of Regents
The Ohio Board of Regents is the state agency that coordinates higher education in Ohio. The agency is directed by its Chancellor, who is a member of the Governor of Ohio’s cabinet. The Chancellor, with the advice of the nine-member Board of Regents, provides policy guidance to the Governor and the Ohio General Assembly, advocates for the University System of Ohio and carries out state higher education policy.
About the Ohio Department of Education
The Ohio Department of Education oversees the state’s public education system, which includes public school districts, joint vocational school districts and charter schools. The department also monitors educational service centers, other regional education providers, early learning and childcare programs, and private schools.
About the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation
The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation of Princeton, New Jersey identifies and develops leaders to meet the nation’s most critical challenges. In 1945, the Foundation was created to meet the challenge of preparing a new generation of college professors. Today Woodrow Wilson offers a suite of fellowships to address national needs, including the education of teachers and school leaders.