Meet the 2013 WKKF-WW Michigan Teaching Fellows
Substitute teacher, Kalamazoo and Portage school districts; coordinator, voter registration drive; graduate of Kalamazoo Public Schools.
Substitute teacher; college chemistry and biology tutor; electrician with eight years’ experience; Dean’s List student; ice hockey player, Michigan Senior Women’s Hockey League.
Tutor, mentor and substitute teacher at local high school, working with students with learning disabilities; college math tutor, three years; Eagle Scout; Cub Scout Den Leader; official for high school and little league baseball and football.
Undergraduate teaching assistant; graduate of high-need schools; worked with youth ages 1-12; co-facilitator, First Year Seminar, Western Michigan University.
Varsity women’s soccer player, Kalamazoo College; volunteer coach, girls’ youth soccer; volunteer, local elementary schools, Big Brothers/Big Sisters; teaching assistant, biology; university scholar, Dean’s list student; peer health advocate.
Architect with experience in urban community design projects; teaching assistant, Detroit high schools; volunteer with several Detroit youth/community groups; literacy tutor; Habitat for Humanity.
Justin Daniel | Lansing, MI | Will attend: Michigan State University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Winthrop University ’05, biology, chemistry
• Graduate institution and degree: Western Michigan University M.S. ’12 (biology)
College mentor, advanced biological fields; graduate teaching assistant, organismal biology and ecology, with focus on methodology of teaching and learning science; volunteer adult tutor in GED subjects.
Eric David | Lansing, MI | Will attend: Michigan State University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: University of Illinois ’10, forestry
• Graduate college, class, and major: Michigan State University ’12, M.S. (forestry)
Program manager/research assistant for various natural resources projects, three+ years; university scholar, Dean’s list.
Kelly DeRango | Kalamazoo, MI | Will attend: Western Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Indiana University ’86, political Spanish and Spanish
• Graduate college, class, and major: University of Michigan ’92, M.B.A. (finance); University of Wisconsin ’95, M.S. (economics); University of Wisconsin ’00, Ph.D. (economics)
College-level instructor/administrator in economics, 15+ years’ experience; tutor, Kalamazoo Public Schools, five+ years’ experience; coach, Girls on the Run; former volunteer, U.S. Peace Corps in Honduras; avid runner/marathoner; food enthusiast.
Derek DenHartigh | Zeeland, MI | Will attend: Western Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Grand Valley State University ’13, biomedical engineering, cell and molecular biology
Dean’s List student; youth ministry leader at local church; college-level tutor, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and physiology, GVSU Student Academic Success Center.
Algebra and ELA tutor, City Year Detroit; Phi Beta Kappa graduate, Dean’s List student; volunteer with Big Brothers/Big Sisters; after-school karate instructor; president, college ski team.
Volunteer elementary school teacher, basic conservation science classes; cum laude graduate; farm camp counselor; AmeriCorps Farm to School member, teaching students about different kinds of produce; assistant varsity basketball coach, urban Catholic school.
Volunteer/observer/participant, math classes in high-need school; peer and colleague mentor; document developer, responsible for training coworkers in complex projects and procedures; passionate and engaged sportsman.
Former water/sanitation engineer for the U.S. Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic; instructor, Osborn Earn-a-Bike program; member, Engineers Without Borders; graduate teaching assistant, Michigan Technological University; fluent in Spanish.
Peace Corps mathematics teacher, Burkina Faso; intern, United States Mission to the United Nations; undergraduate math tutor; psychology research assistant.
Anne Gillies | Ann Arbor, MI | Will attend: University of Michigan
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Franklin & Marshall College ’09, chemistry
• Graduate institution and degree: University of Michigan, Ph. D. ’13 (chemical biology)
Volunteer tutor, high-need high school students; volunteer docent/teacher for science activities, Hands On Museum, Ann Arbor; volunteer STEM mentor for elementary and middle school girls; lab mentor, University of Michigan.
Substitute teacher for elementary and secondary classes; volunteer after-school science teacher and coach; Dean’s List student; Robert Noyce Scholar in program for students committed to teaching math or science in high-need areas.
High school math tutor; substitute teacher, Detroit Public Schools; college peer tutor; coach, Police Athletic League, Detroit; referee, Michigan High School Athletic Association; administrator, orthopedic rehabilitation facility.
Camp counselor for children with epilepsy; swimming teacher/lifeguard, YMCA; resident assistant; coordinator overseeing construction of the building of an airplane fuselage for competition; intern, two summers, mechanical engineering; president, Delta Phi Epsilon sorority.
Ashley Hill | Kalamazoo, MI | Will attend: Western Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Western Michigan University ’09, biology/environmental sciences
• Graduate institution and degree: Western Illinois University, M.S. ’11 (biology)
Adjunct biology instructor, community college; graduate teaching assistant, biology; board member and interpretive assistant for nature programs at state fish hatchery; advocate for environmental education and public awareness regarding natural resources; volunteer high school women’s bowling coach.
Volunteer, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, local elementary schools; volunteer mentor helping high-need students in Detroit learn about college application process; undergraduate teaching assistant and lab tutor; tennis coach, children ages 5-13; university scholar, Dean’s list student, recipient of Rector Scholarship; lighthouse enthusiast.
Substitute teacher and tutor in Detroit Public Schools, pre-K–12; graduate of Detroit Public Schools; public health sanitarian, Department of Health and Wellness Promotion, City of Detroit.
Tutor, advanced mathematics, elementary school students; Phi Beta Kappa graduate; teaching assistant, pre-calculus, leading classes and tutoring one-on-one; president, campus philosophy club; author of multiple published articles in philosophy.
Community organizer focusing on environmental hazards; AmeriCorps volunteer, urban high-need school; tutor, K-12 math, reading, and writing; Habitat for Humanity volunteer; co-leader, after-school homework program.
Tutor; former camp counselor; certified lifeguard; AmeriCorps member with Habitat for Humanity; Eagle Scout; outdoor activities enthusiast; former president of school band; captain, college cross country team.
Lisa Litchfield | Lansing, MI | Will attend: Western Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Northern Michigan University ’06, zoology
• Graduate college, class, and major: Michigan State University ’09, M.S. (zoology)
Docent, program coordinator, and educator, local zoo, five+ years; conservation advocate; graduate teaching assistant, biology; research assistant, West African crab taxonomy; member, Association of Zoos and Aquariums; certified Open Water Diver SCUBA; outdoor recreation enthusiast.
College peer tutor, environmental studies; camp counselor for pre-kindergarten children; Phi Beta Kappa graduate; co-president, Jewish Detroit Initiative, working in classrooms and organizing after school programs for Detroit Public Schools; operations manager, Teach for America summer institute.
Longtime tutor in lower-level math courses; tutor for graduates of high-need schools; Dean’s List student; associate coordinator for multiple tutoring centers; academic coach in general chemistry.
Chemistry laboratory teaching assistant, college chemistry tutor, undergraduate lab researcher; child care provider to children ages 6 months to 10 years; member, Society of Women Engineers; member, University of Notre Dame Marching Band; saxophone teacher.
Airline pilot, 10 years’ experience; flight instructor, incorporating the role of physics in flight into lessons; son of a teacher in the Detroit Public Schools; coach, numerous soccer teams.
Science Olympiad coach, area high schools; chemical education research lab participant; chemistry teaching assistant; volunteer with pre-service STEM teachers; chemistry tutor; hobbyist who knits science-themed items.
Graduate of high-need school; math substitute teacher and tutor; middle school track coach; camp counselor, Detroit Public Schools; ACT prep instructor, high school students; high school administrative assistant.
Actuarial professional with experience in data extraction; graduate of high-need schools; honorable mention awardees for Kettering University’s Woman of the Year; mentor, Kagle Leadership Initiatives Program; dance teacher, children and teenagers.
University scholar; recipient, Michigan Tech Society of Women Engineers Award for Math and Science; volleyball coach for students grades 6-8; volunteer, Pediatric Playroom, Sparrow Hospital; tutor, college chemistry and biochemistry.
Michael Ploof | Ann Arbor, MI | Will attend: Eastern Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Kettering University ‘08, mechanical engineering
• Graduate institution and degree: University of Michigan, M.S. ’10 (biomedical engineering)
Michigan Engineering Education Outreach Teaching Fellow teaching at Ypsilanti High School; volunteer tutor at elementary school, middle school, high school, and community college levels; consultant, small engineering firms, four years; advocate/participant, the Maker movement (inventors and DIY engineering/construction).
Coordinator, social justice mentorship program, high school students; residential advisor, college freshmen; study group leader at Science Learning Center; workshop organizer and leader, conference of high school students; water polo player.
Math tutor; wireless consultant.
Waqar Raza | Canton, MI | Will attend: Wayne State University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology ‘99, computer engineering
• Graduate institution and degree: Wayne State University, M.S. ’07 (biomedical engineering)
Substitute teacher, high school physics, math, and chemistry; volunteer teacher, local Sunday school; teacher and supervisor, multiple computer and electronics undergraduate engineering courses and laboratories; graduate research assistant; certified computing professional.
Substitute teacher; AmeriCorps VISTA member, City of New York Department for the Aging; program coordinator, Ann Arbor Senior Center; post-graduate courses in mathematics; mentor, youth Earn-a-Bike and advanced mechanics cycling education courses; coordinator for after-school programs and community outreach projects.
Supervisor/mentor for children with autism, focusing on development and academic growth; summer camp intern, Boys and Girls Club; coach/teacher, private soccer lessons; captain, women’s varsity college soccer team.
United States Army veteran deployed twice to Iraq; team leader and trainer for other soldiers; member of Michigan National Guard; middle school math tutor; volunteer teacher/tutor, high school advanced algebra; recipient, University of Michigan Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize at the IDEA Institute.
Dean’s List student; coach, for youth swim team; swimming instructor for special needs children; coach, competitive lifeguard team; resident advisor for college freshmen, three years; marathon runner and assistant vice president of the Ohio State University marathon club.
Dean’s List student; supplemental instruction leader in college microbiology and life biology; tutor/GED instructor, Detroit; tutor, college biology, math, and chemistry; undergraduate research assistant.
University scholar, Dean’s list student, member of Lambda Iota Tau honors society; volunteer camp counselor, Camp Discovery for children with epilepsy; English teacher for middle school children in China; avid traveler.
Volunteer math and science teacher, Nicaraguan high-need school; LEGO robotics coach, middle school students; team leader for STEM summer camps for middle and high school students.
Elizabeth Weaver | Mattawan, MI | Will attend: Western Michigan University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: North Carolina State University ’92, chemistry
• Graduate college, class, and major: North Carolina State University ’95, M.S. (organic chemistry)
Pharmaceutical industry professional with five+ years’ experience; volunteer, local nursing home; Girl Scout Daisy/Brownie co-leader; mentor, Kalamazoo Area Achievement Program; volunteer, Mattawan Early and Later Elementary Parent Association; avid gardener and baker.
Mentor to high school freshmen; volunteer teaching assistant in a middle school science classroom; basketball coach to both elementary and middle schools; high school varsity basketball coach; Dean’s List student; field research assistant.
Ornithologist with 15+ years experience in education at local nature center; specialist in environmental education and author of many articles on the subject; certified heritage interpreter; licensed bird bander; specialist in ornithology.
Volunteer mathematics teacher in Honduras, grades 8-12, and head basketball coach; camp counselor for multiple youth summer camps; youth football defensive coordinator, Chicago; assistant coach for 6th grade basketball team; head manager of the University of Michigan football team.
Tutor in physics, chemistry and calculus; physics teaching assistant; volunteer, Ronald McDonald House; undergraduate research fellow; avid practitioner of Indian classical dance, serving as vice captain of Emory SaRass Competitive Dance Team.
Jane Zegers | Lenox Township, MI | Will attend: Wayne State University
• Undergraduate college, class, and major: Wayne State University ’13, environmental science
Volunteer outdoor education instructor as part of science curriculum; undergraduate teaching assistant in structural geology and environmental systems analysis; music teacher and program director, Montessori school, 10+ years; undergraduate research assistant.
Note: The 51 Fellows named for 2013 will begin their programs this summer. In addition, two Fellows named in 2012 deferred the beginning of their program to this year, and will be starting with the 51 listed above.