Dave Miller, Patrick Murren, Daniel Pasker
(Receiving their awards at the ceremony)
Fallon Funseth, Morgan Rawson, Malia Robillard
(Nea’s award-winning all-girl EAA bridge competition team)
Daniel Pasker, a Facilitator (Teacher) at Nea Community Learning Center (Nea) in Alameda, California was named Teacher of the Year by Engineers Alliance for the Arts (EAA). EAA is a non-profit organization that brings professional engineers into high school classrooms to teach a course in structural engineering, that culminates in a San Francisco Bay Area-wide student bridge building competition at the PG&E auditorium in San Francisco.
EAA brought it’s Student Impact Project to Nea over 5 years ago, and Daniel has been welcoming EAA into his classrooms for the last 3 years. His teams have won multiple awards at EAA’s Bridge Showcase and Competition, which in the past have included the President’s Award and Best in Class. This year Daniel’s all-girl team placed second overall.
Patrick Murren, EAA’s Vice President of the Student Impact Project said when presenting the award, “The EAA Board has unanimously chosen Daniel to receive the 2016 Teacher of the Year award in recognition of his contributions to EAA, enthusiasm for the program, and work in providing hands-on, project-based learning opportunities for his students.” The award was presented at the Structural Engineers Association of Northern California’s November meeting in downtown San Francisco. The presentation was followed by a celebratory dinner hosted by EAA.
In his acceptance speech, Daniel thanked engineers Kellen O’Connor (O.co), Sandra Jung (Cushing and Associates) and Brylle Cabucungan (KPW Structural Engineers) who worked in the classroom with his learners (students). These volunteers donated their time to work in Daniel’s classroom to instruct and mentor students for 10 weeks. Daniel said, “They have been an amazing team to work with and have inspired my students to strive for excellence.” He continued, “We all have someone who gave us that spark, to open up our eyes to new possibilities. Having these professionals in the classroom working with our learners gives them an idea of what they might be able to become and possibly ignite that spark.”
Annalisa Moore, Lead Facilitator (Principal) of Nea explains, “Daniel’s background of working as an engineer prior to his teaching career, and bringing EAA into the classroom, has proven to be a winning combination strengthening our project-based learning experiences.”
Additionally, Oakland resident Dave Miller, a design professional with Degenkolb Engineers, was named EAA’s Volunteer of the Year. Dave was lauded at the ceremony for his work on EAA’s curriculum committee and as the lead instructor in the Immaculate Conception Academy in San Francisco’s classroom.
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