President Obama Awards Belhaven Alum For Teaching
November 10, 2016 (Washington, D.C.) - The White House awarded Belhaven's Vicki Moorehead ‘88 the prestigious Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. She is one of 213 outstanding K-12 science and mathematics teachers from across the country honored by President Obama.
"The recipients of this award are integral to ensuring our students are equipped with critical thinking and problem-solving skills that are vital to our Nation’s success, President Obama said. As the United States continues to lead the way in the innovation that is shaping our future, these excellent teachers are preparing students from all corners of the country with the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics skills that help keep us on the cutting-edge.
The winners are selected by a panel of distinguished scientists, mathematicians and educators following an initial selection process at the state level. Winners of this Presidential honor received a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation to be used at their discretion, and are invited to Washington, DC, for an awards ceremony, as well educational and celebratory events and visits with members of the Administration.
Moorehead has been an educator for 28 years, teaching fourth, fifth and sixth grade for the Catholic Diocese of Jackson. She taught for 20 years at St. Richard Catholic School, and in 2009, she played an integral role in the founding and development of St. Anthony Catholic School. She currently teaches fifth and sixth grade science while serving as the school's library media specialist and STREAM Coordinator.
As an avenue to engage, instruct and assess student learning, Moorehead integrates the arts into her classroom. Her classroom is an active learning center where her students' enthusiasm for science is evident. By teaching using the arts, Moorehead feels she is able to reach all learners. She has presented professional development sessions for integrating the arts into the science classroom at the local and state level. She was the recipient of the National Catholic Educational Association’s Distinguished Teacher Award in 2013.
Receiving the Presidential Award is a tremendous honor, connecting me to a network of outstanding educators, said Moorehead. It is simply amazing to me to be recognized for doing what I love —exciting students about science. I have had the privilege of teaching incredible students who have challenged me to be my best and who are responsible for helping me become the teacher I am today. I am so thankful to my family, friends and colleagues who have supported my passion for teaching throughout my career.
Moorehead earned a B.A., summa cum laude, in psychology and a B.S., summa cum laude, in elementary education from Belhaven University. She also received her M.Ed., with honors, in education from Mississippi College. She earned her Library Media Specialist Endorsement and is currently pursuing STEM certification through Mississippi College. Moorehead is certified in kindergarten through eighth grade elementary education and is a licensed library media specialist for K–12.
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