FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon's Massachusetts STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) Teacher of the Year Committee has announced its five finalists for the 2014 Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year award.
The finalists are Jason Dimen from Blanchard Memorial School in Boxborough, Tanya Erban from North Attleboro Middle School, Thomas Hayes from Charlestown High School in Boston, Jeremy Mularella from Oak Middle School in Shrewsbury and Doug Scott from Natick High School.
The committee will announce this year's winner at the conclusion of candidate interviews and will honor the teacher at the annual Massachusetts STEM Summit this fall at Gillette Stadium. The winner's school will be awarded $5,000 to be used to support their STEM education efforts.
"We had a tremendous pool of applicants this year," said Hall Executive Director Bryan Morry. "Selecting five finalists from the group was a challenge, which is a tribute to the high quality of the nominations. We obviously have some tremendously effective and impactful STEM teachers in Massachusetts. I believe it is a testament to all of the teachers that a peer, parent or student thought enough of them to nominate for this honor."
The five finalists are (listed in alphabetical order):
Jason Dimen has been teaching in Massachusetts for 12 years, including the last eight as a sixth grade science teacher at Blanchard Memorial School in Boxborough. He is a member of the Blanchard Memorial School Science Committee and past president of the Boxborough Teachers Association. His students have been finalists in the state's Siemen's Solve for Tomorrow STEM competition. His "Parent University" taps into local parents working in STEM careers to teach lessons in his classroom that reinforce the message that the engineering design process and scientific method are used daily by science professionals. He recently became the director of the local chapter of Club Invention, a summer camp for students entering grades 1-6.
Tanya Erban has been teaching in Massachusetts for 20 years, all at North Attleboro Middle School, where she has taught sixth grade science for the last 16 years. She is a member of the National Science Teachers' Association, the Southeastern Massachusetts STEM Network and is affiliated with the 2014 Students Spaceflight Experiment Program for which she spearheaded a fundraising campaign to support the initiative. She enlists STEM professionals in the community into her classroom lessons and hosts a STEM Career Day at her school. She also earned a grant for a three-month Girls' Science Club, which traveled to see women working in STEM careers.
Thomas Hayes has been teaching for 10 years, the last seven of which have come in Massachusetts at Charlestown High School in the Boston School District. He teaches A.P. environmental science for grades 9-12. He is a Boston Teacher residency graduate and mentor, a member of the National Science Teachers Association, an Urban Ecology Institute member and a Diploma Plus Educator. He uses college-level research with his students to engage them in the most recent findings in the fields of environmental science, earth science and biology. He co-leads the Outing Club, through which students advance their understanding of science outside of the traditional classroom.
Jeremy Mularella has been teaching at Oak Middle School in Shrewsbury for 10 years. He is a member of the National Science Teachers Association and the Worcester Regional Science Fair Committee. He runs a Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) multi-unit program during which he transforms his classroom into a crime scene complete with crucial evidence to identify a perpetrator from a cast of characters. The students run tests using the scientific method to carry out the investigation with skill and precision. He has coached students for the Science Olympiad competition and works with colleagues as part of a summer technology institute at his school.
Doug Scott has been teaching at Natick High School for 11 years. He teaches information technology and robotics. Among his many professional affiliations, Scott is the STEM curriculum leader, the technology curriculum leader and a Lemelson MIT Master Teacher. He has been recognized by Gov. Deval Patrick's office for his Lemelson MIT InvenTeam Award in 2013. He has been honored with the Natick Public Schools Jan Phlegar Award as educator of the year. He mentored two National Center for Women and Information Technology award winners in Massachusetts and has recruited females into robotics through a Girls Robotics Day. He runs a robotics club and a summer youth robotics camp.
The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon awarded its first Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year in 2013. The inaugural winner was Kelly Powers, a computer science teacher from the Advanced Math & Science Academy Charter School in Marlborough.
The Hall and Raytheon partner to promote STEM education through engaging hands-on STEM modules. By the end of the 2013-2014 school year, The Hall will have hosted more than 18,000 school visitors on field trips.
About The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon
The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon is the crown jewel of Patriot Place and the only sports and education experience of its kind. Through a dazzling array of interactive multimedia exhibits and artifacts never before viewable by the public, The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon showcases the tradition of the New England Patriots, explores the history of football in New England, and promotes math and science education for the thousands of schoolchildren expected to visit each year. For more information, please visit www.thehallatpatriotplace.com.