TWU teachers-in-training to attend NASA summer institute

May 24, 2018 – DENTON – Texas Woman’s University has been selected to send a team of four pre-service teachers along with a faculty sponsor to the 2018 NASA Minority University Research and Education Project’s (MUREP) Educator Institute at Johnson Space Center in Houston. The five-day on-site experience takes place June 4-8 and will feature student-centered classroom activities that use NASA assets and resources to help educators develop practices that will engage students in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The team’s faculty sponsor, Sandra Westmoreland, Ph.D., associate professor in the TWU Department of Biology, will be joined by Katelynn Hogan, a junior interdisciplinary studies major from Slocum; Sarah Jennings, a senior mathematics education major from Plano; Keyaire Williams, a junior mathematics major from Cedar Hill; and Lisette Ceniceros, a junior biology major from Rowlett. All team members are currently enrolled in pre-service teacher training at TWU in pursuit of Grade 4-8 or 7-12 teacher certifications.

“This is an extremely valuable professional development opportunity for these future teachers,” said Westmoreland. “Our students will be able to apply their NASA experiences and activities to their own lesson plans and classroom teaching practices. Their personal interactions with real NASA engineers and scientists will inspire a passion for STEM learning in many generations to come.”

The NASA MUREP Educator Institute provides minority-serving institutions with educational opportunities to enhance STEM instruction for diverse and underserved grade school student populations. In addition to the Johnson Space Center experience, each team member will receive pre- and post-institute online instruction, lodging, breakfasts, lunches and $500 stipends. Previous institutes have featured guest speakers, previews of upcoming NASA projects, and training in hands-on activities that will boost student interest in STEM fields.

About Texas Woman’s University

Texas Woman’s University is the nation’s largest public university primarily for women, with more than 15,000 students at its three locations in Denton, Dallas and Houston. The university is tied for fifth in U.S. News & World Report’s diversity ranking. TWU is a Hispanic-serving institution, as determined by the U.S. Department of Education.



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Anna Ryan

Page last updated 11:58 AM, April 8, 2019