About The Award
The Burroughs Wellcome Fund’s Career Award for Science and Mathematics Teachers recognizes outstanding STEM teachers in the North Carolina public primary and secondary schools.
The award provides $175,000 over five years and is available to North Carolina teachers who have an outstanding performance record in educating children and who demonstrate solid knowledge of STEM content.
This award presents opportunities for professional development and collaboration with other master science and/or mathematics teachers who will help to ensure their success as teachers and their satisfaction with the field of teaching. The award offers schools and school districts the opportunity to fully develop and empower teachers as leaders in the field.
Special consideration will be given to teachers working in hard-to-staff, economically deprived classrooms in North Carolina. Special consideration will also be given to efforts that integrate environmental science and climate change into STEM-related curriculum.
The Fund and the State Board of Education recognizes that improving STEM education in North Carolina will require systemic revision of K-12 instruction.
Teachers who are content-area experts and have the pedagogical skills are critical to ensuring a students’ success in understanding STEM subjects. These teachers can make a difference by serving as change agents, not only for their students, but also for other educators across the state.
The largest hurdle in accomplishing these goals has been a severe shortage of STEM teachers (even beyond North Carolina’s ongoing teacher shortage). In 2015, just 13 percent of the University of North Carolina system’s 4,675 newly prepared teachers were certified in computer science/technology, science, and mathematics.