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Photo of Joseph Bordogna

Dr. Joseph Bordogna
Deputy Director
Chief Operating Officer
National Science Foundation

NSF Distinguished Teaching Scholars
NSF - Stafford II
Arlington, VA
January 7, 2004

Good morning everyone and welcome to NSF. I hope you all enjoyed the holidays and that you're still in the festive spirit. I first want to express my gratitude for the tremendous service you are providing.

So let me begin by thanking you, the reviewers, for coming here and volunteering your time to select the (2004) nominees of NSF's Director's Award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars.

All of us at the National Science Foundation are delighted that such an illustrious group of reviewers has agreed to participate in the process. Your expertise will prove invaluable in selecting the 2004 nominees. The dedication and good judgment of each and every one of you is essential to the continued success of this program.

The Director's Award for Distinguished Teaching Scholars honors outstanding individuals who have made a significant impact on both research in science, engineering mathematics, or technology and the enhanced education of undergraduates. The award is intended to enhance an academic culture of excellence in research and education and the creative integration of the two. It is the highest honor bestowed by NSF for excellence in both teaching and research.

Throughout NSF's history, the integration of discovery and learning has been a defining characteristic of our investments.

The NSF strategic plan is focused on the goal of investing in people, ideas, and tools, which are the mission elements that support the creation, integration, and transfer of knowledge by academe. The Plan details three core strategies: developing intellectual capital, integrating research and education, and promoting partnerships. The Distinguished Teaching Scholars' awards exemplify these goals and strategies.

Through the DTS program, NSF has supported the efforts of some of the nation's most gifted and inspiring individuals. Past recipients have brought enormous excitement and a richness of discovery to their students. They have distinguished themselves through research in astronomy, electrical and computing engineering, tectonics, mathematics, cognitive science, and materials science. They have also developed imaginative teaching applications areas such as multimedia visualization, online resources for the study of fractal geometry, and spectroscopy and photochemistry to teach chemistry.

A recipient of the 2003 award who is here with us today, Chris Rogers, used robotic LEGOS, Steinway pianos, and reduced gravity environments to engage students from kindergarten through college in engineering concepts and education.

This year's nominees are equally talented. They are noted for their achievements in diverse areas that reflect the NSF supported fields of Biology, Geosciences, Computer Science, Engineering, Math and Physical Sciences, and Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Since the DTS program began in 2001, a total of 19 scholars have been named. This year NSF received 89 nominations, more than twice the number submitted last year. We at NSF are delighted with the increasing success of the program.

The DTS program aims to recognize leaders in their respective fields who have integrated research and education in science and engineering and who demonstrate the potential for continued leadership. As we strive to find new ways to attract students to science and engineering, the DTS program is critical to our efforts.

That makes your role today all the more important. You are helping us identify stellar individuals, who will ultimately receive DTS awards. This reviewing process will definitely call upon your own powers of creativity and insight.

This is not an easy job for any of you. The process is as competitive as any at NSF, so I greatly appreciate the time and expertise you are devoting to the task. Without you, the Foundation could not run one of its most vital programs.

As you review the proposals, keep in mind the goals of the DTS program. It aims:

  • to invest in the integration of research and education and integrate diversity into NSF programs, projects, and activities;

  • to foster the development of intellectual capital by identifying outstanding individuals with a history of substantial impact in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology research and in educating undergraduate students and K-12 teachers and students;

  • to encourage the integration of research and education by providing resources that these exemplary educators can use to explore new ways of engaging students to research activities;

  • to enable instructors to share their experiences with, and mentor, other faculty who strive to improve their integration between their research and their teaching;

  • to promote an academic culture that values and rewards members of the academic community who contribute to both disciplinary scholarship and the education of undergraduates, including students majoring in non-scientific disciplines;

  • to publicize the scholar's influence so that dual efforts in teaching and research by other faculty will be rewarded; and

  • to recognize the efforts of institutions of higher education that commit resources in support of faculty who effectively contribute to both disciplinary-related scholarship and science education.

I won't hold you any longer because I know you have an important job to do, and I know how anxious you are to get started. We're all excited to see the results.

Thank you, again.

Return to a list of Dr. Bordogna's speeches.


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