SALEM, N.H.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Motivis Learning today announced the winners of its inaugural 2017 Aspiring Educator Scholarship Initiative, which was created to help ease the financial burden of future teachers. The three winning students, Kimberly Pfeifer, Asaad Fulton and Rebecca Tamayo, who are all enrolled in a graduate or undergraduate program in education at different universities around the country, were bestowed a total of $13,000, with $10,000 to the winner and $2,000 and $1,000 going to second and third place.
To apply for the scholarship, Motivis asked applicants to share how they will use their career to make a difference in the lives of their students through teaching, how they plan to change the world through education and how they will promote student success in the classroom through community engagement, emerging instructional practices and/or educational technology. 146 students participating in undergraduate, graduate and PhD programs at 91 different universities and colleges competed for the scholarship.
Kimberly Pfeifer, a first year doctoral student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst who is part of the Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies department with a focus in children, families and schools, was awarded the first place prize of $10,000. In her winning submission, Pfeifer talked about her vision for the future of education in America: classrooms designed to actively engage students in their community and world. Originally a teacher for more than five years, Pfeifer recently decided to pursue a PhD in the hopes of learning more theory to help support her pedagogical practice.
Kimberly’s goal as a teacher is to create change within the classroom through her vision of radical change in the overall US education system with regards to the ways in which students learn and teachers teach, doing away with antiquated systems of schooling, with the overarching goal of achieving more meaningful learning in the classroom. She plans to use her scholarship to travel to Finland, where schools have implemented Phenomenon Based Learning on a large scale. In addition, she’d like to visit New Orleans to learn more about the process of writing a Charter, something every school in the city did after Hurricane Katrina.
“I cannot thank Motivis Learning enough for this generous $10,000 scholarship,” said Pfeifer. “I am so incredibly appreciative as this money will give me the opportunity to travel to Finland and other areas to learn and further enhance my skills to help support my pedagogical practice. Financially speaking, graduate school is extremely difficult which is why I am so grateful that Motivis gives future teachers like myself this kind of opportunity, as it will help me more than words can express.”
"We received nearly 150 applications from current and future educators who will make a difference in the world,” said Brian Peddle, CEO, Motivis Learning. “It was extremely hard to narrow it down to three finalists from the impressive list of submissions, and then choose a winner. We were moved and inspired – not just by Kimberly, Asaad and Rebecca – but by ALL of the outstanding submissions. As Motivis continues to grow we hope to do more to help educators succeed."
The second and third place recipients also both have impressive goals for the future of education. Fulton stated in his submission that his degree in education will help him take up a leadership position in education to raise awareness about the lack of diversity in the education field, and eventually he would like to open a school of his own that incorporates and encourages diversity. Tamayo has a goal of using and promoting technology in the classroom for children on the autism spectrum to enhance their learning and communication skills to better prepare them for further education goals and eventually a career.
The average 2016 college graduate holds $37,172 in student debt, which is up six percent from 2015, according to calculations by student loan expert Mark Kantrowitz, while NewYorkFed.org states that there are currently more than 44 million Americans with student loan debt. However, certain organizations are slowly starting to see the severity of this issue, and Motivis Learning, the Learning Relationship Management System designed for student-centered, personalized education models, is one of them.
About Motivis Learning
Motivis Learning is a Learning Relationship Management (LRM) platform specifically designed to deliver student-centric, personalized learning programs. The LRM platform fully integrates data from LMS, SIS and community tools to deliver a single, clear view of the full student narrative. Motivis Learning was born out of the Innovation Lab at Southern New Hampshire University and was first put to work in SNHU’s next-generation CBE program, College for America, which became the first CBE program of its kind approved by a regional accreditor and the U.S. Department of Education. Today, Motivis Learning is trusted by leading higher education and K-12 institutions, including Harvard University, Cornell University and EF Academy. For more information, please visit www.motivislearning.com.