Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program
The Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program seeks to encourage talented science, technology, engineering, and mathematics majors and professionals to become K-12 mathematics and science teachers. The Noyce Scholarship Track provides funds to institutions of higher education to support scholarships, stipends, and academic programs for undergraduate STEM majors who earn a teaching credential and commit to teaching in high-need K-12 school districts.
The senior Noyce Team at Savannah State University (SSU) will work closely with partner institutions to recruit, mentor, educate, and certify students to become highly qualified STEM middle school and high school teachers to help alleviate workforce shortages in this area of national need. The project team will help place graduates from the program in high-need schools and then provide them with important and timely support when they enter the STEM teaching profession. Responding to the high demand for STEM teachers in the Savannah Chatham County Public School System (SCCPSS), SSU will partner with SCCPSS and two-year school Savannah Technical College (STC) to increase the number of high quality, technology education-certified STEM teachers prepared to teach in high-need schools. In particular, this Noyce project will prepare at least twenty-eight (28) undergraduate mathematics and engineering majors and eight (8) STEM professionals to become certified middle school or high school teachers of mathematics and/or science grades 6 - 12. SSU's activities as a Historically Black University with a student body of 94% African-American not only will enhance STEM workforce diversity, but will also contribute to a broader understanding of how teacher preparation programs can be tailored to reach and prepare African-American and other underrepresented minority students for successful STEM teaching careers.
The overall program will employ several interconnected components to recruit, train, mentor, and retain new highly qualified STEM teachers. These strategical components will include: (i) promoting extensive outreach and targeted recruitment activities; (ii) providing internships and summer programs (workshops, observation, and hands-on teaching experiences) for first and second year undergraduates as part of the recruitment process to generate interest in teaching; (iii) funding scholarships for selected junior and senior STEM majors who wish to become teachers; (iv) offering a challenging, problem solving, inquiry based, collaborating learning environment to address real-world applications through SSU's established teacher education program; (v) implementing field experience activities to aid the training and retaining process; (vi) orchestrating professional development, mentoring opportunities, and other induction support to ensure a successful transition to teaching and improved retention for the early career teacher graduates; and (vii) researching and assessing the effects of these initiatives. The assessment tools are designed to provide both quantitative and qualitative information as a basis for research and continuous improvement of the program.