Local Science Educators Awarded Grants to attend NSTA Conference

Three Eastern North Carolina Science Teachers will be attending the National Science Teachers Association Conference in St. Louis, MO on April 10 – 14 thanks to awards from Dr. Len Annetta, Taft Distinguished Professor of Science Education at ECU and the College of Education’s Center for STEM Education.

Dr. Annetta funded the awards in order to provide local science educators an opportunity for professional growth and peer networking. The recipients of the awards are: Mrs. Yerdia Palmer-Crearer, a science teacher at Grantham Middle School in Wayne County; Mrs. Kristen Corcoran, a science teacher at Duplin Early College High School; and Ms. Emily Nelson; a science teacher at Greene Central High School in Greene County.

Mrs. Palmer-Crearer is an alumna of Northern Caribbean University where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology. She teaches seventh grade science. Mrs. Kristen Corcoran is an alumna of Illinois State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Biological Education. She teaches high school Chemistry and Biology. Emily Nelson is a two-time graduate of ECU with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Masters of Teaching in Science Education. She teaches Earth and Environmental Science, Physical Science, Biology and Research Science. All three had teachers in secondary school or college who inspired them to become science educators and pass their passion on to others.

In addition to funding the awards, Dr. Annetta has invited all three educators to share what they learn at the NSTA Conference with ECU pre-service teachers.

“Attending the NSTA Conference was an incredible experience for me when I was a young teacher,” said Annetta. “I want to help teachers in our local schools access this level of outstanding professional development and create opportunities for them to share what they learn with others.”

Dr. Len Annetta, Ms. Emily Nelson, Mrs. Kristen Corcoran, Mrs. Yerdia Palmer-Crearer and Dr. Shawn Moore, Director of the C-STEM Center.

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