120 attend TMSTEC statewide math, science research...

120 attend TMSTEC statewide math, science research conference

Nearly 120 higher education and K-12 administrators, faculty and others from across the state and region participated Feb. 2-3 in the MTSU Tennessee Mathematics and Science Technology Education Center Research Conference 2012.

The two-day conference was held at Embassy Suites Murfreesboro Hotel and Conference Center in Murfreesboro.

Dr. Tom Cheatham

“It’s good to get a lot of people together to talk about math and science education,” said Dr. Tom Cheatham, MTSU dean of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences and event coordinator.

Cheatham said three keynote speakers during Feb. 2’s sessions included Virginia Shepherd, director of Vanderbilt University Outreach; Gary Martin, Auburn University professor of secondary math education; and Chris Singer, director of the Engineering Directorate at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

A Feb. 2 late-afternoon Tennessee state government panel included Linda K. Jordan, a science consultant with the Tennessee Department of Education; Katrina Miller, director of First to the Top at the Tennessee Higher Education Commission; David Sevier, deputy executive director of the Tennessee State Board of Education; and Sky Gallegos with the Tennessee STEM Innovation Network. STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering and math.

Cheatham said funding for the conference primarily comes from the Tennessee Space Grant Consortium. Dr. Mark Abolins, associate professor of geosciences at MTSU, serves as principal investigator of the consortium. Dr. Mike Allen, vice provost of the MTSU Office of Research and dean of the College of Graduate Studies, provided matching funds, Cheatham said.

Feb. 3’s conference agenda included separate math and science breakout sessions and moderated sessions led by Martin and Shepherd.

To view the full conference schedule, visit the TMSTEC website,, and click on the “Research Conference 2012″ button.

— Randy Weiler (