A national leader in the field of teacher education, the University of Northern Colorado recently received a $1.2 million, five-year grant from the National Science Foundation ((NSF DUE-1035333) to support and prepare math and science teachers to serve in high-need school districts, especially in rural areas.
Scholarships of $16,000 will be awarded through a competitive process to 22 qualified UNC upperclassmen who are majoring in STEM disciplines - science, technology, engineering or math - and completing UNC's teacher preparation program.
In addition, to build the pool of teacher candidates in those four disciplines, 80 freshmen and sophomores will receive paid internships that provide them with K-12 teaching and tutoring experiences and encourage them to consider teaching as a profession.
The program will also provide $16,000 scholarships to eight STEM professionals who return to complete the licensing qualifications for teaching science and math.
The NSF Noyce Scholarship Program will begin Sept. 1 under the direction of UNC faculty Robert Reinsvold (Biological Sciences), Val Middleton (Teacher Education), Cathleen Craviotto (Mathematics) and coordinator Lori Reinsvold (Mathematics and Science Teaching Institute).
Each Noyce scholar will commit to teach at least two years in a high-need school for each year a scholarship is received. Upon graduation, scholars will be assigned experienced mentors at their schools and will attend focused seminars during their first year of teaching.
UNC will partner with 25 school districts, 19 of which are in rural communities in northeast Colorado, where the need for science and math teachers is very high.
The districts include: Adams 14 School District (Commerce City), Weld County School District RE-1 (Gilcrest), Weld County District RE-7 (Kersey), Weld County District 6 (Greeley-Evans), Weld County School District RE-5J (Milliken), Eaton School District RE-2 (Eaton), Morgan County School District RE-3 (Fort Morgan), and Northeast Colorado Board of Cooperative Educational Services, representing 12 rural school districts in northeastern Colorado.