NCSMT recognizes Shodor as statewide leader in innovative partnership
Collaboration brings computing excitement to community kids' programs
DURHAM, N.C. — April 21, 2008 — When it comes to partnering with other organizations to improve math and science education, there's one NC non profit organization that stands out: Shodor.
Shodor's Pathways to Cyberinfrastructure program, which brings computational science (scientific computing) activities into existing afterschool programs at community centers such as the Emily K Center in Durham, was recognized on April 19th at the NC Science, Math and Technology Education Center's annual Celebration of Science, Math and Technology as a leader for its partnership efforts.
The "Partnership Award in Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education" recognizes and honors North Carolina organizations that have an innovative partnership supporting science, mathematics, and technology (SMT) education.
Shodor's Pathways program seeks out existing programs for kids from grades 3 through high school in order to add a scientific computing component. At the Emily K Center, for example, students are challenged with activities such as:
Amy Cummings, Education Program Leader at the Emily K Center, commented that youth involved in Shodor's program at the center last summer "had a genuine understanding of how germs and disease spread because they had worked with a computer generated model." "They had learned a good deal about probability in the process," she added.
"Shodor is able to engage our students in science and technology in a way that they do not experience in their school day," explained Cummings.
Shodor also partners with Durham's Antioch Builds Community Center through the Pathways program. NCCU undergraduates were trained to lead computational science workshops in a four-week summer program at the center for 3rd through 8th grade participants. Topics ranged from mathematical modeling to environmental science.
"Shodor has done an outstanding job of sharing math and computational skills for the youth of this community," said Michael D. Page, Chairman of the Antioch Center's board of directors. "These workshops have been an asset in enhancing learning skills, improving homework performance and demonstrating new and innovative techniques to problem solving," he added.
By partnering with organizations such as the Emily K Center, various faith-based centers, several Durham Parks and Recreation centers and Durham Public Schools' afterschool programs, Shodor multiplies the impact of its work by teaching others to adapt and use Shodor's online tools and student workshop curricula alongside other NSDL resources.
Dr. Robert M. Panoff, founder and executive director of Shodor, accepted the award on behalf of the whole staff. "Winning the 'Partnership' award does so much to validate the "BASF" approach we have been taking at Shodor, "Panoff said. "We don't have to run a lot of the programs in math, science and technology, but we try to make a lot of the programs in NC better."
Shodor is a Durham non profit serving students and educators to improve math and science education nationwide through the effective use of interactive computing and communications technologies. Their website receives more than 3 million web page views per month. For more information, visit www.shodor.org/about.
More information is available at:
Mary Paisley, Communications Coordinator, (919) 452-5334, email@example.com
Bob Panoff, President and Executive Director, (919) 530-1911, firstname.lastname@example.org
Patricia Jacobs, Associate Director, (919) 530-1911, email@example.com