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Feb 19, 2016

How to Inspire the Next Generation of Teachers

What do you tell students who are considering careers in education? Our newest Milken Educators talk about how to inspire the next generation of teachers in our new Spotlight profiles. See their answers and get to know the class of 2015-16 in Connections.

Dear Milken Educators and Champions of Education,

Four states, five new Milken Educators, and thousands of proud students: The past few weeks have been the most terrific kind of whirlwind. Keep reading for details and follow along in our photo galleries and videos.

About the New Milken Educators

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Angela Malone (MD '15, top left): A former opera singer, Malone focuses on integrating the arts into STEM education at Oxon Hill Middle School in Fort Washington. After thanking her colleagues, the next words out of Malone's mouth were: "I can't wait to call my mom!" Her mother, whom she credits with her choice to pursue a career in education, has been a middle school science teacher in Texas for 43 years.

Lindsey Bibler (SC '15, top right): Bibler not only teaches calculus at South Florence High School, she's creating a new generation of math lovers. In 2014, every student in her AP Calculus AB class passed the AP exam. Bibler is a South Florence High alumna — in fact, she graduated as valedictorian of her class.

Laura Servin (TX '15, center): Servin, a math teacher at Whittier Middle School in San Antonio, received congratulatory hugs and handshakes at her surprise notification from colleagues, students, the entire student mariachi band, and dignitaries like Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Education Commissioner Mike Morath. The best hug of all, though, came from her very proud son Ricardo Lopez, a seventh-grader at Whittier.

Kimberly Freeman (SC '15, bottom left): Latin may technically be a dead language, but it's very much alive for Freeman's students at Lexington Middle School. They love studying Latin and excel on the National Latin Exam thanks to her creative teaching methods, which integrate current teen interests like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games into language lessons.

Deborah Siebern-Dennis (MO '15, bottom right): Known as the "queen of classroom management" at Bode Middle School in Saint Joseph, science teacher Siebern-Dennis doesn't hesitate to incorporate technology into her classroom: "That's how these kids learn," she says. Her seventh-graders have the highest benchmark scores in the district.

Spotlight: Gina Benz and Jessica Major

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Gina Benz (SD '15, left) grew up on a farm in South Dakota, hates when students tell her teaching is their backup plan, and wishes all kids had their own books so they could take notes in the margins.

Jessica Major (LA '15, right) says teaching in a TAP school has changed her life, loves early morning talks with her robotics kids, and is determined to show students why education is a wonderful career choice. 

Learn more about Gina, Jessica, and the rest of the Milken Educator class of 2015-16 in Connections.

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In this newsletter:  Gina Benz (SD '15)Lindsey Bibler (SC '15)Kimberly Freeman (SC '15)Jessica Major (LA '15)Angela Malone (MD '15)Laura Servin (TX '15)Deborah Siebern-Dennis (MO '15)
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