Reports have shown that Texas is facing critical shortages of qualified math and science teachers, and the situation is becoming dire now that the state has implemented a requirement that high school students must complete four years of both math and science.
The College of Education at UNT, which began as a teaching college, is committed to educating and graduating exceptional teachers in an effort to ease the teacher shortage. A new grant from the National Science Foundation will help the college continue its commitment to developing excellent teachers.
The college received nearly $750,000 from the NSF's Noyce Program. The program honors the late Robert M. Noyce, the scientist credited with the invention of the integrated chip, and is dedicated to improving mathematics and science instruction in American public schools. UNT also received a $500,000 grant from the NSF's Noyce Program in 2005.
The five-year grant will support the UNT Science and Mathematics Robert Noyce Scholarship Program. The program's goal is to recruit and train talented science and mathematics majors and professionals for careers in teaching. The scholarship program is a joint effort with the Fort Worth and Denton school districts.
The funds will support seniors and graduate students preparing to become secondary mathematics and science teachers. Scholarship recipients will receive $10,000, which is intended to cover tuition, fees and books. They also will receive $1,000 to help them buy math and science supplies for their classrooms. Scholarship recipients are required to teach in a district with a shortage of teachers for their first two years of service.
"Highly qualified mathematics and science teachers provide students with a greater opportunity for post-secondary education, and also help create a work force that will help the nation compete in the global economy," says Colleen Eddy, assistant professor of teacher education and leader of the faculty team that submitted the grant proposal to NSF.
Other team members were Pam Harrell, associate professor of teacher education; Lee Hughes, assistant professor of biology; and John Quintanilla, associate professor of mathematics.
UNT currently is accepting applications for spring 2011 Noyce Scholars. The program is open to:
- undergraduate seniors
- juniors who will be seniors by January 2011
- transfer students
- career-changing professionals who have a bachelor's degree.
Applications will be reviewed beginning Nov. 1, 2010. Eleven scholarships will be awarded each year for five years.
In addition to the Noyce Scholarship Program, UNT has another prominent program aimed at addressing the nationwide teacher shortage of secondary math and science. The program, known as Teach North Texas, allows students who want to teach to earn a bachelor's degree in math, science or computer science, while simultaneously earning their teacher certification. TNT is a joint venture between the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education.
For more information and to obtain a scholarship application, visit the UNT Noyce Scholarship Program website. For additional questions contact the Noyce Scholarship Program office at 940-565-3890.
Alyssa Yancey with UNT News Service can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.