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Metz Teacher Receives Honors in Science Education

March 29, 2022 - Metz teacher Carey Hancey-Shier has been named a Maitland P. Simmons Memorial Award for New Teachers by the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA). The award recognizes K-12 teachers for their outstanding work and achievement in science education.

“Congratulations to all of the award winners on their success,” said Eric Pyle, NSTA President. “Each one of these incredible educators has repeatedly gone above and beyond their role as a teacher to inspire their students and colleagues, helping them move towards a brighter future, and demonstrating what is possible in science teaching and learning.”

Award recipients will be recognized at the NSTA National Conference being held in Houston, on April 1. As an awardee, Hancey-Shier will be provided the funds and opportunity to attend the conference which will have presentations and workshops for science educators.  

Hancey-Shier will continue her professional development this summer as a participant in the 2022 Northrop Grumman Foundation Teachers Academy. Only 22 educators were selected as “Teacher Fellows” and will experience a number of science, engineering and technology-related activities and professional learning opportunities during the academy.

Launched in 2015, the Northrop Grumman Foundation Teachers Academy was established to help enhance teacher confidence and classroom excellence in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), while increasing teacher understanding of the skills needed for a scientifically literate workforce.

“Teachers inspire students every day as they help to create a solid foundation for them in STEM and we are thrilled to welcome this year’s cohort of teachers to the Northrop Grumman Foundation Teachers Academy,” said Stephanie Fitzsimmons, manager of corporate citizenship, strategy and communities for Northrop Grumman. “Through this hands-on program, we demonstrate how teaching critical workforce skills translate to building a diverse pipeline of STEM students globally.”

The Teacher Fellows were selected on the basis of several criteria, including displaying a strong desire to advance STEM education and applying real-world applications in the classroom.

Hancey-Shier, who teaches Integrated Math and Science (IMS) and coaches the VEX Robotics and Science Olympiad teams at Metz, grew up attending Manassas City Public Schools. After graduating from Osbourn, she earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry and biochemistry with a minor in biology from Virginia Tech. She also has an extensive background in scientific research through Penn State University.

“Each of the Teacher Fellows are determined individuals who are committed to developing their skills as teachers and are dedicated to making science, technology, and engineering more relevant for their students,” said Dr. Erika Shugart, executive director for NSTA. “Through participation in the Academy, these educators will have a unique opportunity to translate hands-on experience in a high-tech environment to an effective classroom program that will help spark an interest in innovation and build their students’ knowledge of STEM.”

In the past few years, Hancey-Shier has helped lead students at the National Science Bee and other science competitions. In 2020, a team of Metz students she advised won second place in the state in an eCybermission competition where students create a solution to a community problem. Most recently, a team of her students was selected as one of 57 winning teams in the inaugural NASA TechRise Student Challenge.