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STLCC Receives Monsanto Fund Grant for Teacher Workshops

December 13, 2016

St. Louis Community College has been awarded a Monsanto Fund grant in the amount of $25,000 for a teacher workshop, offered through the college’s Center for Plant and Life Sciences at the Bio Research Development and Growth (BRDG) Park.

The date for the five-day workshop in summer 2017 is being finalized and will be announced soon.

The workshop is open to 15 high school teachers who have not previously participated. All participants receive a stipend for attending, as well as biotechnology supplies and equipment for their classrooms. Teachers also have the opportunity to receive graduate credit through Lindenwood University for their participation in the workshop.

The workshops are followed by visits to the teachers' classrooms by Angela Taylor, education specialist at the Center for Plant and Life Sciences, to further help teachers implement what they learned. Teachers from the workshop also have the opportunity to bring up to 20 students to the center for a one-day, hands-on experience in the STLCC labs.

"This is an excellent opportunity for area science teachers to not just get training in bioscience techniques that they can take to their classrooms, but to learn more about what is going on in the St. Louis region in the plant and life sciences," said Richard Norris, Ph.D., director of STLCC’s Center for Plant and Life Sciences. "Teachers have an opportunity to interact with faculty and staff that work in the center, as well as industry partners, allowing them to see the opportunities that exist for their students and how the community college is the best place for them to start and get the hands-on lab experience that companies are looking for when hiring."

"Providing students with increased access to science education is one of our longstanding commitments, and we’ve found that supporting the dedicated teachers who bring those science topics to life in the classroom is a fantastic way to multiply those efforts," said Michelle Insco, Monsanto Fund program officer.

STLCC has conducted seven teacher summer workshops, serving 112 area science and agriculture teachers interested in bringing biotechnology techniques into their classrooms. This marks the second time the Monsanto Fund has provided funding for the workshops. These workshops were initially funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technology Education program, and in subsequent years by grants from NASA.