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Siemens Foundation Announces Participants for “Siemens Teachers As Researchers” Program

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Valerie Francois, for Siemens Foundation

Stephen Wakefield, for Discovery Education

Pam Bonee, for Oak Ridge Associated Universities

— Twenty Teachers From Across the Country Selected For Prestigious Hands-On Research Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory —

Iselin, NJ. (April 12, 2010) – The Siemens Foundation, in conjunction with Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU), Discovery Education and College Board, today announced that 20 middle and high school teachers from across the country have been chosen to participate in the newly designed Siemens Teachers as Researchers (STARs) program. Selected from more than 100 applicants, these educators will work with some of the nation’s top scientists on short-term projects focused on the most current and innovative scientific research happening today.

The STARs program is a two-week professional development course designed to empower teachers to bring the excitement of authentic research into the classroom and inspire students to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. Teachers will work in small groups and collaborate with scientific teams from Oak Ridge National Laboratory. They will conduct individually designed research projects offering real-world experience to bring back to their classrooms. Teachers will also receive a $500 mini-grant to purchase equipment and/or supplies for their classrooms.

“We are thrilled to give some of the best teachers in the country the opportunity to work at the largest, most prestigious laboratory in the nation,” said Jeniffer Harper-Taylor, president of the Siemens Foundation. “Through the STARs program, these 20 teachers will be able to apply real-life research experience to their work in the classroom and inspire students to pursue further education and careers in the scientific field.”

In addition to conducting research side-by-side with leading scientists, the STARs participants will also benefit from a number of facility tours and seminars with topics ranging from “Effective Integration of Technology into the Classroom” to “Lesson Plans and Best Practices.” This immersion into authentic research, professional scientific collaboration and educational enhancements will provide insight, resources and scientific contacts to the participating teachers.

The participating teachers include:

  • Miriam Adams, Hanceville, Ala., Hanceville Middle School
  • Anthony Birkmeier, Harrison Township, Mich., L`Anse Creuse High School
  • Terrence Bissoondial, Hewlett, N.Y., George W. Hewlett High School
  • Grace Blasingame, Pasadena, Tex., Sam Rayburn High School
  • Brooke Fischels, Ottumwa, Iowa, Ottumwa High School
  • Andrew Harshman, Sarasota, Fla., Sarasota High School
  • James Harvey, Erie, Pa., Collegiate Academy
  • Tamora Jackson, Memphis, Tenn., Bellevue Middle School
  • Peter Langley, Portland, Oreg., Oregon Espiscopal School
  • Stacey Militello, Shrewsbury, Mass., Oak Middle School
  • Kendall Morton, Glenelg, Md., Glenelg High School
  • Darryl Richards, Baltimore, Md., New Era Academy High School
  • A.J. Scheetz, Westport, Conn., Staples High School
  • Karen Shepherd, Plano, Tex., Plano Senior High School
  • Andrea Stawiery, Addison, Ill., Addison Trail High School
  • Michelle Swenson, Long Lake, Minn., Orono High School
  • Margaret Washburn, Danville, Va., George Washington High School
  • Andrea White, Port Orange, Fla., Spruce Creek High School
  • George Williamson, Rocky Mount, N.C., Rocky Mount Preparatory
  • Theresa Wilson, Wolcott, Ind., Tri-County Middle-Senior High School
  • The STARs program is part of the Siemens STEM Academy, a national professional development program for educators created by the Siemens Foundation in conjunction with Discovery Education, Oak Ridge Associated Universities and the College Board. The Siemens STEM Academy aims to advance science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education in the United States by engaging educators from across the country through hands-on and multimedia professional development opportunities that will ultimately improve STEM education for students nationwide.

    For more information about the Siemens STEM Academy, please visit

    About the Siemens Foundation
    The Siemens Foundation provides more than $7 million annually in support of educational initiatives in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in the United States. Its signature programs include the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology, Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement, and The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, which encourages K-12 students to develop innovative green solutions for environmental issues. In February 2010 the Siemens Foundation launched its newest initiative, The Siemens STEM Academy, a national STEM education program for teachers designed to support educators in their efforts to foster student achievement in these fields. By supporting outstanding students today, and recognizing the teachers and schools that inspire their excellence, the Foundation helps nurture tomorrow’s scientists and engineers. The Foundation’s mission is based on the culture of innovation, research and educational support that is the hallmark of Siemens’ U.S. companies and its parent company, Siemens AG. For further information, visit

    About Oak Ridge National Laboratory
    Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is America’s largest, multi-purpose, national research laboratory. Its primary research areas are neutron science, advanced materials, biological systems, energy, national security, nanotechnology, chemical sciences, nuclear physics, and high performance computing. ORNL is home to more than 50 scientific centers and specialized facilities, including the Spallation Neutron Source, National Center for Computational Sciences, Joint Institute for Neutron Sciences, Joint Institute for Biological Sciences, Bioenergy Science Center, Center for Nanophase Material Sciences, National Transportation Research Center, and the Tennessee Solar Initiative.

    About Oak Ridge Associated Universities
    Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) is a university consortium leveraging the scientific strength of 97 major research institutions to advance science and education by partnering with national laboratories, government agencies, and private industry. ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education for the U.S. Department of Energy.

    About Discovery Education
    Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) revolutionized television with Discovery Channel and is now transforming classrooms through Discovery Education. Powered by the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education combines scientifically proven, standards-based digital media and a dynamic user community in order to empower teachers to improve student achievement. Already, more than half of all U.S. schools access Discovery Education digital services. Explore the future of education at

    About the College Board
    The College Board is a not-for-profit membership association whose mission is to connect students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board is composed of more than 5,700 schools, colleges, universities and other educational organizations. Each year, the College Board serves seven million students and their parents, 23,000 high schools, and 3,800 colleges through major programs and services in college readiness, college admission, guidance, assessment, financial aid and enrollment. Among its widely recognized programs are the SAT®, the PSAT/NMSQT®, the Advanced Placement Program® (AP®), SpringBoard® and ACCUPLACER®. The College Board is committed to the principles of excellence and equity, and that commitment is embodied in all of its programs, services, activities and concerns. For further information, visit