Local Teachers “Empowered” Thanks to Natural Gas and Oil Industry
September 3, 2019
Akron Patch. Thanks to the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP), teachers from 43 Ohio counties are heading back to their classrooms with an insider’s look into Ohio’s thriving natural gas and oil industry. Equipped with a first-class curriculum, classroom supplies, science labs and experiments, materials kits and more, teachers who attended OOGEEP’s STEM and Geology Teacher Workshops are more prepared than ever to bring energy education to Ohio’s students.
The following teachers from Summit County participated in either the geology workshop held in New Philadelphia or the STEM workshop held in Marietta:
- William Stone, Ellet High School in Summit County, geology workshop
- Blake Beluscak, Ellet High School, STEM workshop
- Richard Chiera, Bolich Middle School, STEM workshop
- Chelsea Herrick, Marlington High School, STEM workshop
- Paul McMasters, Manchester Middle School, STEM workshop
- Megan Ritchie, St. Sebastian Parish School, STEM workshop
- Carrie Wagar, Green High School, STEM workshop
Chiera said, “the workshop does a great job providing strategies, information and lessons to dispel misunderstanding and educate students about oil and gas production.” Herrick said, “a five-star learning experience for the teacher that wants to bring fun and practicality to the classroom.”
OOGEEP holds teacher workshops throughout the year to help foster energy education by connecting STEM and geology education and the energy industry. The curricula for both of OOGEEP’s workshops were designed by teachers, for teachers, to be integrated directly into Ohio’s educational standards. Teachers spend a full day in the classroom learning from industry professionals and award-winning educators alike before heading out on a unique, industry-related field trip to see Ohio’s energy development in action.
“Ohio’s teachers are the building blocks of our future and Ohio’s natural gas and oil industry workers are the building blocks of America’s energy independence,” OOGEEP’s Executive Director Rhonda Reda said. “Our industry has increased from 14,000 employees to more than 200,000 in less than 10 years. With an impactful industry employing that many of Ohio’s graduates, we want teachers to be equipped with accurate information, that way they can educate students on the importance of the industry and prepare them for one of the 80 different careers available to them within it.”
Thanks to the generosity of Ohio’s natural gas and oil producers, OOGEEP provides these workshops at absolutely no cost to Ohio teachers or their school districts. The industry covers all expenses for teachers to attend the two-day workshops, as well as a wide variety of free resource materials, lab supplies, lesson plans, classroom posters and maps, rock and mineral kits, internet resources and activities all for them to bring back to their classrooms. These workshops also provide an opportunity for continuing education credit through Ashland University. More information about the workshops can be found at http://www.oogeep.org/teacher-students/.
The Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) is a non-profit statewide education and public outreach program. Created in 1998, OOGEEP provides a variety of programs throughout the State of Ohio. These programs primarily focus on teacher workshops, scholarships, science fair, firefighter training, industry training, career and workforce development, research and guest speaker programs.
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