February 19, 2023 - 12:59 am - Posted in News

Inwood, Iowa — A West Lyon Teacher is one of six teachers in the state to receive an award.

The Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council tells us they are proud to announce that Mr. Shane Peterson, the 8-12 Industrial Technology Instructor at West Lyon Community School District of rural Inwood, has been named as a recipient of the 2023 Iowa STEM Teacher Award, sponsored by Kemin Industries. The award is given to six educators each year who go above and beyond to inspire student interest in and awareness of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Now in its ninth year, the award is given annually to one full-time, licensed preK-12 teacher from each of the six STEM regions in Iowa. Each recipient is honored for their efforts to foster enthusiasm and inspire a passion for STEM that goes beyond the classroom and helps prepare students for future high-demand careers.

They tell us that Peterson was recognized for his efforts in expanding the industrial technology program at West Lyon Community School District and transforming the program from a basic woodworking program to an impactful STEM program over his 10 years at the school.

In his nomination for the Iowa STEM Teacher Award, Peterson’s students describe him as someone who encourages them to think creatively, goes above and beyond for the industrial technology program, and someone who has grown his students’ confidence in their futures. His principal noted that in addition to acquiring new technology, encouraging more female students to take interest in industrial technology, and bringing in industry speakers to his classroom, he has received over $200,000 in grants for his classroom.

The Governor’s STEM Council says Peterson finds opportunities for his curriculum to connect with the community and STEM-focused business partners. His students are currently collaborating with the local daycare to build a storage shed for their facility, partnering with a local nursing home to develop and prepare birdhouse activity kits, completing Ford technician training modules, and working with a local production facility to create prototypes using 3D printing and modeling software. They say these are all opportunities for students to gain valuable learning experiences while connecting to their community.

As a recipient of the 2023 Iowa STEM Teacher Award, presented by Kemin Industries, Peterson will receive $1,500 to use for his classroom and $1,500 for personal use. He recently received his award and a small celebration at his school and will later be honored, along with his fellow recipients, in a recognition ceremony during STEM Day at the Fair at the Iowa State Fair.

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