Roger Kassebaum, Director of the Mitchell Academy of Science and Technology at Milken, was recently chosen as a national winner of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautic Foundation Educator Achievement Award. This award includes gifts from industry and a trip to Washington D.C.for the honoree and a guest.
The AIAA recognizes that it takes special teachers to inspire students in science and math. These award-winning educators make coming to class an adventure. They ignite the interest and participation of all students and they do it every day. Kassebaum meets these requirements and has helped talented students learn from mentors and visionaries in science, medicine and aerospace research and development.
The AIAA Foundation recognizes up to six outstanding educators for their contributions to the continued study of mathematics, science, and related technical studies among America’s youth. The awards are presented every other year (odd years). Recipients of the award are honored at the AIAA Global Air and Space International Business Forum and Exhibit. Teachers are nominated and the nomination includes the nominee’s efforts to bring “real world” STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) to the classroom in new and exciting ways.
Kassebaum is the guide who brings out the best in students, especially those who seek to be challenged outside of the classroom. He facilitates students' learning and hands-on work under the guidance of top researchers, doctors and scientists in university laboratories and hospitals. Milken students are mentored by professionals at the top of their field as they advance frontiers of knowledge. So far, eight of Kassebaum's MAST students have been published in scientific and medical journals.
He has mentored students who have been the winners of the Pete Conrad Spirit of Innovation Award for the last three years running. Milken's Robotics teams have been to the international finals and last year they competed in the Israel Regional Contest. Kassebaum's students have been award winners in bridge building contests, the Science Bowl, and the Intel Science Talent Search. The students go on stage to be recognized for their great work and Kassebaum is content to stay in the background and bask in their reflected glory.
Julie Albertson, chair of AIAA’s Pre-College Outreach Committee, stated: “In the over ten years of Educator Achievement Award presentation, AIAA has benefited from the significant participation of awardees on committees at the local national, and international level. This lasting contribution is critical to the health of the industry, and the future of aerospace, and it is fitting that the community has gone above and beyond to recognize their hard work and efforts.”
by Gerald Loomer and Jane St. Clair