THEC’s Rhoda to address MTeach meeting

THEC’s Rhoda to address MTeach meeting

Richard G. “Rich” Rhoda, executive director of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, will address THEC’s initiatives in math and science during a Dec. 6 MTeach stakeholders’ meeting at MTSU.

Rich Rhoda

The annual meeting, which will run from 9 until 11 a.m., will be held in the James Union Building’s Hazlewood Dining Room. Rhoda’s session will start at 10:15.

MTeach program coordinator/instructor Leigh Gostowski said she anticipates Rhoda will discuss initiatives in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, “and how MTeach figures into those goals and the wider agenda.”

Gostowski will discuss the status of the three-year-old MTeach program. In fall 2009, MTSU received a five-year, $1.925 million grant to launch MTeach, a replica of the nationally known UTeach program started by the University of Texas at Austin in 1997.

Eboni Eaton, Corey Horton and Caitlin Rainey will share student experiences, and Sally Millsap, Mark LaPorte and Robin Bollman will discuss their master-teacher experiences.

Dr. Rick Vanosdoll will deliver closing remarks. Vanosdoll is a professor in the College of Education’s Womack Family Educational Leadership Department and a former director of the Tennessee Mathematics, Science and Technology Education Center.

Stakeholders include MTeach staff, Deans Tom Cheatham of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences and Lana Seivers of the College of Education, participating faculty from both colleges and other STEM education faculty.

Also expected to attend are MTSU Provost Brad Bartel and Dr. Phillip Waldrop, associate dean of the College of Education.

The MTeach program “fundamentally changes the way high-school math and science teachers are trained,” Cheatham said. MTeach recruits strong math and science majors and supports deep content knowledge and early engagement of future teachers in K-12 classrooms.

— Randy Weiler (