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UW College of Education Graduates Receive Newcomb Beginning Teacher Grants

September 29, 2016

Seven University of Wyoming College of Education graduates are the recipients of the Lola B. Newcomb Beginning Teacher Support Grant.

The recipients recently were recognized and shared their insights and experiences as first-year teachers.

The grant, awarded annually to recent College of Education graduates, is funded by a gift from the estate of Newcomb, who attended summer school at the College of Education in the 1930s. It provides $1,000 for professional development to first-year teachers in Wyoming who are graduates of the UW College of Education.

Grants may be used for a range of activities, including: mentoring; conferences and workshops; travel related to those activities; substitute time to allow the recipient to participate in mentoring and professional development opportunities; and purchase of materials for their respective classrooms.

Applications for the Newcomb Grant applications are available each fall through the UW College of Education Dean’s Office.

The seven 2016 Newcomb Grant recipients are Jennifer Bennett, Rachel Howerton, Haley King, Bryce Mittelstadt, Ashley Radosevich, Laura Timm and Claire Wetzel.

Bennett teaches secondary English at Hanna-Elk Mountain Junior/Senior High School. She attended the National Council of Teachers of English Whole Language Umbrella Summer Institute with support from her Newcomb grant. Attending the event provided the opportunity to deepen her knowledge about teaching English at all secondary levels, as well as ways to support students’ college and career readiness goals.

Howerton teaches K-5 art at schools in Sheridan County School District 2. Last year, during her inaugural teaching year, she taught art in Riverton. She used her Newcomb grant to attend the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts conference in Kansas City. Attending that event exposed her to new methods for teaching students to use clay in her classroom, how to manage the classroom when using clay and related tools, and appropriate ceramic lessons for young students.

King teaches mathematics at Sheridan High School. She opened her teaching career last fall at Evanston High School. She used her Newcomb grant to attend the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics annual meeting in San Francisco. Attending the conference gave King the opportunity to network with peers and discover new methods to keep students interested and engaged in learning mathematics.

Mittelstadt teaches seventh-grade social studies at CY Middle School in Casper. He used his Newcomb grant to purchase materials supporting the common core, Wyoming and national standards in his content area -- all designed to help his students succeed as learners. One of the outcomes of his grant was construction of two project-based units that emphasize experiential learning.

Radosevich teaches kindergarten at St. Anthony’s Tri-Parish Catholic School in Casper. She purchased manipulatives, dramatic play props, classroom materials and an egg incubator with her Newcomb grant funds. The purchases expanded her ability to create social learning experiences for her young students, including the opportunity to watch a chick hatch during a special spring teaching unit.

Timm teaches third grade at Willow Creek Elementary School in Fremont County School District 25 in Riverton. She wanted to improve her students’ writing skills, so she used Newcomb funds to purchase several books for her class. Among the purchases were books on mentor texts as well as children’s books covering various reading levels and genres. Her goal was to help students connect writing and reading.

Wetzel teaches second grade at Saratoga Elementary School. She attended the Teton Science Schools’ Place-Based Education Workshop with part of her Newcomb funds. Wetzel also purchased professional development resources as well as books for her classroom library, manipulatives for her mathematics teaching and supplemental curriculum resources.

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