Mari Venturino, educational technology doctoral candidate and researcher, was awarded the prestigious Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching for the 2020-21 academic year. Venturino will travel to the Netherlands beginning in January 2021 for a five-month research inquiry project titled Using Technology to Build Bridges in Science Education Between School and the Community.
“My goal is to examine how to better engage students in real-world science learning and data collection through citizen projects,” Venturino said. “I hope to bring new strategies to share with my colleagues through professional development opportunities and strengthen science education in my classroom, school and district.”
The purpose of the Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching is to send select primary and secondary school teachers based in the United States to study abroad, pursue individual research and take professional development courses. Teachers return to share expertise gained during their experience abroad with local teachers and students to benefit both the awardee and their community.
Venturino currently teaches middle school science in San Diego, California and is pursuing the Ed.D. in Educational Technology degree through Boise State’s fully online program in the College of Education.
“This is an amazing opportunity to take a step back from classroom teaching to examine teaching as a whole, see how a different education system approaches science education, and to see how science education can be embedded into local communities through citizen science projects,” Venturino said. “I’m looking forward to using my Fulbright experience to redesign science lessons to make them more community-focused and relevant to my students’ lives.”