The Museum’s new Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program is the first urban teacher residency program offered by a museum and a unique 15-month teaching fellowship for people who want to share their passion for science with middle and high school students in New York State. On Saturday, January 7, the Museum will host an Open House for the program from noon to 2 pm or 2 to 4 pm, giving prospective applicants the chance to meet faculty and staff, find out more about how the MAT program is structured, and take behind-the-scenes tours of the Museum campus before the final application deadline on January 31. MAT Program Co-Director Ro Kinzler, who is also the director of the Museum’s National Center for Science Literacy, Education, and Technology (NCSLT),recently answered a few questions about this unique opportunity.
Why has the MAT program been created now?
New York State recently issued the opportunity for “non-traditional” institutions to offer master in education programs designed to prepare teachers in high-need areas for the first time—so the Museum has stepped up to meet this opportunity.
What type of applicant is the program seeking?
The program is seeking individuals with undergraduate or higher degrees in Earth and related sciences. We’re looking for recent graduates as well as folks already into their careers who are motivated to switch gears and become Earth science teachers for grades 7 through 12.
In the first Ph.D. defense held by the Richard Gilder Graduate School, Sebastian Kvist today successfully defended his dissertation about blood-feeding leeches, paving the way for him to receive his doctoral degree from the Museum.
Using the latest 3D printing technology and dinosaur fossils from the Museum’s paleontology collections, a group of high school students recently spent two weeks producing models of dinosaurs—and learning to think like paleontologists—as part of the innovative program “Capturing Dinosaurs: Reconstructing Extinct Species Through Digital Fabrication.”
The Museum's Youth Initiatives group has been developing a new Youth Advisory, a group to help us think about how to expand digital programs that teach science here at the Museum. The Youth Advisory's recent mission: to write a Want Ad that telegraphs what you want from digital-media infused science programs at the American Museum of Natural History.