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Mary Lee Webeck, Ph.D.

Mary Lee Webeck, Ph.D. (IN '00)

Director of Education

Holocaust Museum Houston
Houston, TX

At the time of the Award, Mary Lee Webeck, Ph.D. was:

Master Teacher in Residence
Klondike Elementary School
West Lafayette, IN

Subject(s) taught: General Elementary

Biographical Information

Dr. Mary Lee Webeck is director of education at Holocaust Museum Houston and director of the Museum's Warren Fellowship for Future Teachers. This professional development program for teachers in training brings pre-service teachers to the Museum for an intense study of the content and pedagogy necessary to teach about the Holocaust and other genocides. Until December 2008, Dr. Webeck was an assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Texas in Austin. The last course she taught at the university was a Signature Course for freshman students on the topic of genocide. Dr. Webeck received an Academic Innovation Award from the RKG Center for her course, "Philanthropy and Education." Previously, Dr. Webeck was adjunct assistant professor for the Curriculum and Instruction Department at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. When she was a teacher at Klondike Elementary School in West Lafayette, Dr. Webeck's multi-age fourth- and fifth-grade classrooms became a district model. She co-developed the school's intermediate multi-age curriculum and created a social studies unit called "We the People," in which students researched and debated legal issues with help from practicing attorneys. She replaced traditional parent-teacher conferences with student-led conferences, a practice adopted by other teachers. Always active in philanthropy, Dr. Webeck mounted a significant fundraising campaign to benefit a student who was stricken with an inoperable brain tumor, and was in need of experimental treatment. Dr. Webeck is a National Board Certified teacher.

Personal Message

In August 2001 I took on a new role as a teacher educator at The University of Texas at Austin. My interests continue to be on creating engaging, challenging, and aesthetic classroom learning experiences. At the university my teaching and research focus on teacher development, civic education, and the relationship between philanthropy and education. I am currently engaged in an exciting collaboration about Holocast education with the Warren Family Foundation, Ballet Austin, Holocaust Museum Houston, and my UT colleagues. I enjoy the Milken listserve and continue to learn from my colleagues and my experiences as a Milken Educator.