Ag Biotech Academy award winners

Envelope, please: The winners are Shannon Langston, Jennifer Foudray, and Pam Clark! Thanks to the Ohio Soybean Council, three Ohio teachers are receiving new supplies and materials to improve biotechnology education in their classrooms.

The Ag Biotech Academy Awards contest was open to teachers who attended this summer’s Ag Biotech Academy, a two-day professional development event for teachers sponsored by the Ohio Soybean Council. The Academy is held at DuPont-Pioneer’s soybean facility and offers teachers an opportunity to learn about topics like gel electrophoresis, micropipetting and food science. Each participating teacher goes home with curriculum and materials for use in their classrooms.

Pam Clark teaches at Global Impact Stem Academy in Springfield, Ohio. She will receive a class set of TI Inspire CX calculators, which use probes to give precise and accurate readings and to gather data. After students design and build a miniature golf course at their school, probes will be used to measure motion and force of balls at each hole. “We will also be landscaping the course with plantings and some test plots, and we’ll purchase additional probeware that will go with the calculators to complete soil tests,” said Clark. “Our goals are to incorporate technology in all aspects of our laboratory-based classes, so these calculators will be used in Physical Science, Chemistry, Biology, Plant and Animal Biotechnology, Environmental Sustainability and Food Science classes, along with several of our students’ senior/capstone projects and STEM fairs.”

Jennifer Foudray, a biology/plant and animal biotechnology instructor at Global Impact STEM Academy, will use the money to buy lab supplies and equipment so students can apply their knowledge to real-world situations and improve laboratory skills. “My goal is to increase interest in the area of biotechnology. With the grant I will be able to introduce a myriad of possible career opportunities and laboratory techniques to my students,” said Foudray.

SHANNON LANGSTON is a 7th grade science, health, biology and anatomy & physiology teacher in Russia, Ohio. She will use her contest prize to buy more microscopes and equipment for her students to use in the “How Did They Get That Gene in There?” lab from the GrowNextGen website. Microscopes will allow the students to view bacteria and better understand bacteria’s role in genetic modification, and other supplies will make it possible for the students to perform the gel electrophoresis lab.

Langston said, “Attending the Ag Biotech Academy was extremely helpful. I appreciated being given supplies to implement what I learned from the workshop. I really enjoy going to workshops where I get labs that I can easily use in my class. I also enjoyed meeting other science teachers and exchanging ideas for using biotechnology in the classroom. I will definitely be going to this workshop again in the future!” The Ag Biotech Academy will be held again this summer. Watch the GrowNextGen newsletter for dates for this informative and fun event!

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