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NSF Congressional Update

June 7, 2004

NSF Director and House Science Committee Chair Honor NSF Distinguished Teaching Scholars

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National Science Foundation (NSF) Acting Director Arden Bement and House Science Committee Chairman Sherwood Boehlert today recognized eight recipients of the NSF Director's Award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars (DTS), the foundation's highest honor for teaching and research excellence. The awardees were honored at a breakfast on Capitol Hill in the Rayburn House Office Building at the House Science Committee Hearing Room dedicated to America's space program.

Whether it's revealing design to undergraduate engineering students by dismantling photocopiers, teaching calculus through visualization techniques, or providing virtual research and data gathering opportunities on climate change, the teaching scholars are wide-ranging in their approaches.

Both Bement and Boehlert addressed the awardees at the breakfast. Boehlert acknowledged their all-inspiring dedication and enthusiasm for teaching and its larger impact on preserving America's preeminence in science and engineering.

"They are true leaders in both the scientific and academic realms. Their pioneering research, already well recognized, is equaled, and sometimes surpassed, by a rare talent and commitment to communicate and teach knowledge," said Bement.

The awards, worth about $300,000 to each scholar over the next four years, represent NSF's finest examples of accomplishments by scientists and engineers who play dual roles of mentor and researcher. The grants allow the scholars to work on new projects, or continue present work in new ways that benefit their individual fields and the students they support.

Among the awardees were three engineers, Alice M. Agogino of the University of California, Berkeley; Susan E. Powers of Clarkson University in New York; and David F. Ollis of North Carolina State University. Thomas F. Banchoff, a Brown University mathematician; Dean A. Zollman, a physicist at Kansas State University; Julio J. Ramirez, a neuroscientist from Davidson College in North Carolina; Walter C. Oechel, an earth systems scientist from San Diego State University; and Kenneth G. Tobin, an urban educator from the City University of New York Graduate Center are scientists receiving the award.

For more information on the awardees and this NSF program, please see the press release, "NSF Names Eight Distinguished Teaching Scholars".

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