WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, the Biotechnology Institute announced the winner of the Mentor of the Year Award, who will be recognized next week at the 2019 BIO International Convention in Philadelphia.
Dr. Cristobal Carambo is a chemistry teacher at the Philadelphia High School for Girls in Philadelphia in addition to a teacher leader at the Teacher’s Institute of Philadelphia at the University of Pennsylvania. He also serves as a member of the National Steering Committee of the Yale National Initiative and was the 2017 recipient of the Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching.
Dr. Carambo chose to become a science educator because he believes that science and technology are central to our understanding of the world in which we live – and more importantly for his students – and the future worlds that we have yet to imagine. He supports the study of science because it challenges and improves students’ critical thinking, reading and writing skills, and requires communication in highly specific language. He considers science to be an essential discipline because it is where an inquisitive mind can find answers to nearly all questions relating to the natural world.
“If the answer is not within our accumulated body of scientific knowledge, then science provides the inductive or deductive reasoning methodologies with which we can use to investigate possible solutions and create new knowledge,” said Dr. Carambo.
Dr. Carambo’s own educational experiences have reinforced his belief in the importance of STEM education for underrepresented populations, especially when so many facets of society are being upended by technological innovation. He is most concerned that students in the inner city may be caught off guard by the pace of change and unable to keep up. For these reasons, he sees STEM to be an indispensable facet of teaching because it will equip students with the intellectual skills and knowledge they will need to achieve their life goals.
“Dr. Carambo’s personal educational achievements are perhaps exceeded only by his dedication to advancing young women’s interest in STEM careers,” said Dr. Larry Mahan, President of the Biotechnology Institute. “For this we are proud to honor him with this award.”
A native of Cuba, Dr. Carambo holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Florida International University. He also obtained a Master of Science Education degree from Florida State University after teaching bilingual science in Miami for five years. He moved with his family to Philadelphia and in 2000 joined a research program at University City High School with Dr. Kenneth Tobin of the University of Pennsylvania. His research into the sociocultural dimensions of urban science education earned him a Master of Chemistry Education degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 2006. He continued his research and was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy in science from Curtin University in 2011. Dr. Carambo continues to teach science for Philadelphia Public Schools and has worked as adjunct lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University and Queen’s College in New York City.
About the Biotechnology Institute
The Biotechnology Institute is an independent, national nonprofit organization dedicated to education about the present and future impact of biotechnology. Its mission is to engage, excite and educate the public, particularly students and teachers, about biotechnology and its immense potential for solving human health, food and environmental problems. For more information, visit www.biotechinstitute.org.