6th Annual UTeach Institute-NMSI Conference Archive (2012)
More than 400 individuals representing 45 universities from 17 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands participated in the 2012 UTeach Institute-NMSI Conference.
The 6th annual UTeach Institute-NMSI conference, held May 30 - June 1 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Austin, Texas, was an overwhelming success. More than 400 participants attended the conference for three days to learn about operational and instructional aspects of the UTeach STEM teacher preparation program and its growth across the country. Participants shared ideas and experiences, networked and established partnerships, and discussed future initiatives. In addition, this year’s meeting celebrated the first national group of graduates.
A majority of the participants were faculty, program co-directors, staff, administrators, and students (pre-service teachers) from 25 universities implementing UTeach program as of Spring 2012 and 8 universities preparing to offer their first UTeach courses in Fall 2012. Seven other universities interested in implementing the UTeach model were also represented. Other participants included donors, representatives from foundations, sponsors, UTeach graduates, teachers, special guests, and other UTeach supporters.
Pre-conference UTeach course retreats took place the morning of the first day of the conference. About 120 faculty members and instructors from UTeach programs across the country attended these meeting to share experiences, insights, ideas, adaptations, and innovations with one another. More than 30 participants attended the pre-conference workshop on Science Literacy Maps, an online concept-browsing interface provided by the National Science Digital Library (NSDL).
The opening plenary session featured five distinguished graduates of UTeach programs across the country. Panelists included Teach North Texas graduate, Lauren Gay; teachHOUSTON graduate, Mariam Manuel; UTeach Masters graduate, Joshua Nelson; UKanTeach graduate, Michael Ralph; and UTeach graduate, Dr. Janice Trinidad. Panelists individually presented their own innovative classroom practices before participating in a panel discussion moderated by Texas Tribune education columnist, Reeve Hamilton, and answering questions from the audience.
Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO and managing partner of Vesalius Ventures and president of the Harris Foundation, delivered the keynote address. Dr. Steve Cantrell, senior program officer for research and data at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, delivered the closing plenary speech, entitled “The MET Project: Building Trust in Teachers”.
Another highlight of the 2012 conference was the UTeach StoryBooth. Current students and alumni, master teachers, co-directors, and faculty from UTeach programs nationwide visited the booth to share their stories about their UTeach programs, teaching, and teachers.
In total, 80 sessions were offered this year, including interactive presentations, workshops, course overviews, and panel discussions. In addition, faculty, staff, and students presented more than 30 posters on topics such as research related to UTeach courses and STEM teaching and learning, and course/program exposition.
2012 UTeach Institute - NMSI Conference was made possible by the generous support of Exxon Mobil Corporation, National Math and Science Initiative, National Instruments, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Tokyo Electron America, Educational Advancement Foundation, and Teachers TryScience (by IBM). We also thank Laying the Foundation, Sally Ride Science, and Texas Tribune for being a supporter for UTeach Programs.
Dr. Mary Ann Rankin welcomes conference participants at the opening of the conference
Students, staff, and faculty present their research findings and course/program practices during the poster session
About 60 students currently enrolled in UTeach programs across the nation attended to 2012 conference
Distinguished teachers (graduates of UTeach programs) across the country lead the opening plenary session as panelists
Participants gather around and continue to network and share ideas during the breaks
Howard Hughes Medical Institute hosts the lunch and screens a short film entitled “The Making of the Fittest: Natural Selection and Adaptation”