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PNNL researchers honored for science and engineering education leadership

April 26, 2007 Share This!

RICHLAND, Wash. – Pacific Northwest National Laboratory today honored 11 researchers for their contributions to science education efforts.

James A. Campbell, George V. Last and Shuttha Shutthanandan received PNNL’s Fitzner-Eberhardt Award for “outstanding contributions to science and engineering education.” Heather E. Dillon, Janelle L. Downs, Gregory J. Exarhos, Steven C. Goheen, Pavel R. Hrma, Mitchell A. Pelton, Irvin R. Schultz and Susan S. Southard received the Department of Energy Office of Science Outstanding Mentor Award.

The Fitzner-Eberhardt and DOE Office of Science Undergraduate Research Programs’ Outstanding Mentor Awards are presented to PNNL staff annually and are based on nominations from their peers, managers and students and teachers they mentor.

PNNL established the Fitzner-Eberhardt Award in 1994 in memory of Dick Fitzner and Les Eberhardt, both PNNL scientists whose careers were tragically cut short in a plane accident in 1992. Fitzner and Eberhardt have been honored through this award because of their outstanding contributions to the laboratory’s science education program. Two PNNL researchers won the award last year.

The award recognizes those who have significantly impacted science and engineering education in several areas: participation in Lab-based programs for students, teachers and faculty; establishment of research and education partnerships with colleges and universities; support of science, technology, engineering and mathematics education in grades kindergarten to 12; and engagement in community outreach through activities such as after-school programs and educational competitions. Each of the award recipients has been involved in all of these areas.

The Office of Science Undergraduate Research Programs’ Outstanding Mentor Award recognizes exceptional mentors in one of five DOE student programs. The focus of the award criteria is on the quality of mentoring, including prepping students before internships begin; providing well-defined research projects for the students that match their research interests; supporting student involvement in enrichment activities outside of the research project; supporting development of the student’s research paper, presentation and abstract; and demonstrating practices that go above and beyond the normal responsibilities to students in the mentoring relationship. Ten PNNL researchers were honored last year.

PNNL’s education program has engaged more than 160,000 students, teachers and faculty since 1982. Currently, PNNL’s Office of Science & Engineering Education offers 14 Lab-based workforce development and diversity programs for students, conducts two Lab-based professional development programs for teachers and faculty, leads two statewide science education reform projects, and participates in more than a dozen outreach efforts targeting students, teachers, education leaders, parents and community members.

In 2006, more than 180 laboratory staff members mentored students and teachers in the fields of environment, energy, homeland security and computational and fundamental sciences. They participated in efforts to improve the teaching and learning of science in our elementary, secondary and post-secondary schools.

Tags: Energy, Environment

Interdisciplinary teams at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory address many of America's most pressing issues in energy, the environment and national security through advances in basic and applied science. Founded in 1965, PNNL employs 4,300 staff and has an annual budget of more than $1 billion. It is managed by Battelle for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. As the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information on PNNL, visit the PNNL News Center, or follow PNNL on Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter.

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