Arlington, Va.,—April 11, 2012—The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning, has announced the recipients of its 2012 Teacher Awards. NSTA presented its most prestigious award, the Robert H. Carleton Award, sponsored by the Dow Chemical Company, to former NSTA President Dr. Michael J. Padilla, director of the Eugene T. Moore School of Education at Clemson University. Padilla received his award at a special banquet and ceremony at the NSTA National Conference on Science Education held March 30th in Indianapolis.
Padilla is well-known for his leadership in and dedication to science education. His long career includes his unparalleled ability to promote vital science and teacher education initiatives by obtaining grants, ultimately attracting $36,000,000 in highly competitive external funds. All of the grants addressed critical areas of need in science, mathematics, and teacher education, involving collaboration among K–12 teachers, faculty from colleges and universities and business interests.
After college, Padilla worked for two years in the business world before transitioning to a career as a science educator. He began teaching in a high-minority, underserved school bordering Detroit’s automobile plants, and his experiences working with this population influenced his future endeavors as an educator. After becoming a university professor in Canada, he moved to the University of Georgia, where he spent 29 years serving as an associate dean and director of the School of Teacher Education.
Throughout his career, Padilla has never forgotten his roots as a science teacher, using his K–12 experiences to enhance his work at the university level, to lead professional organizations and to provide leadership through grants and projects. In addition to serving as NSTA president in 2005, Padilla has worked on numerous NSTA committees, served on the NSTA board of directors, and chaired the planning committee for the NSTA National Conference in Atlanta.
Additionally, he has authored more than 250 articles, books, chapters and papers. As a member of the writing team for 1995 National Science Education Standards, Padilla helped to create the National Assessment in Education Progress (NAEP) Science framework, and was a primary author of the science and mathematics curriculum frameworks in Georgia.
Padilla has also been recognized extensively for his contributions to science education. The University of Georgia named him an Aderhold Distinguished Professor and honored him with the Walter B. Hill Service Award. He is the recipient of the NSTA Distinguished Service to Science Education Award and has also been honored by the National Association for Research in Science Teaching and the Association for Science Teacher Educators.
“Dr. Padilla has consistently proven himself to be a leader, innovator, and visionary in the science education field and has created a lasting legacy for all science teachers,” said NSTA President Patricia Simmons. “NSTA is proud to present this prestigious honor to him for his significant contributions.”
The Robert H. Carleton Award recognizes one individual who has made outstanding contributions to and provided leadership in science education at the national level and to NSTA in particular. The awardee receives a $5,000 grant from Dow, a formal citation, and an all-expense-paid trip to attend the NSTA National Conference.
The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), www.nsta.org, is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA’s current membership includes approximately 60,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.
Dow combines the power of science and technology with the “Human Element” to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2009, Dow had annual sales of $45 billion and employed approximately 52,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 214 sites in 37 countries across the globe. References to “Dow” or the “Company” mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com. For more information about Dow’s involvement as a global partner of the International Year of Chemistry, click here.
Kate Falk, NSTA