Saint Martin’s professors receive $78,000 grant to improve math, science learning in Southwest Washington

Sept. 9, 2005

Lacey – The faculty of Saint Martin’s University will be working to improve math and science education in four disadvantaged Washington school districts, with the help of a $78,000 grant from the Washington State Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Three Saint Martin’s professors will present several workshops for teachers in the Boistfort and Pe Ell school districts of Lewis County and the Raymond and South Bend school districts of Pacific County. The workshops will help elementary and high school teachers better understand Washington State academic standards for math and present some methods to help struggling math students, said Saint Martin’s education Professor Huabin Chen, Ph.D.

Chen said the State provided names of school districts with fewer resources to help teachers with additional training.

The workshops also will give participants a chance to brush up on their math teaching skills, as well as teach some new ways to use technology in the classroom. Last year, the state awarded the Saint Martin’s education division almost $88,000 to give similar workshops in the Hoquiam, Ocosta and Taholah school districts in Grays Harbor.

Saint Martin’s professors participating in this program are:

  • Huabin Chen, who will be the program director. A Saint Martin’s faculty member since 1994 and a two-time nominee for the university’s outstanding faculty award, Chen is director of education technology programs at the university. He helped write a $12 million grant for the Olympia School District and a $1.7 million grant for The Evergreen State College. Chen has a doctorate in science/environment education from Indiana University.
  • Lee Mohler, Ph.D., who will be teaching at four intensive workshops for high school teachers next summer. Mohler is a semi-retired Saint Martin’s mathematics professor. He received his doctorate in mathematics from the University of Oregon.
  • Cynthia Petersen, Ph.D., who help teach workshops and participate in regular monthly meetings with teachers. A Saint Martin’s professor since 1993, Petersen was the recipient of the 2004 outstanding faculty award and has some 15 years experience in the special education field. She earned a doctorate in organization, leadership and multicultural education from the University of San Francisco.

Saint Martin’s is an independent, Roman Catholic coeducational college founded by the Benedictine Order. About 1,100 students are enrolled on its main campus and about 600 more in programs at the college’s extension campuses at Fort Lewis Army Post, McChord Air Force Base and Olympic College.

Huabin Chen, Ph.D.
Education professor, director of technology

John DeWeese
Assistant media coordinator