Space Foundation Selects 20 New Teacher Liaisons

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Space Foundation Selects 20 New Teacher Liaisons The Space Foundation has selected 20 outstanding educators for its 2012 Flight of Teacher Liaisons and for the first time in the program's ten-year history, an international teacher from India has been chosen for the elite program. Vandana Suryawanshi of Vidya Valley School in Maharashtra is a middle school educator who has been teaching biology, earth science and general science for 20 years.

She joins the 19 other new Teacher Liaisons who were selected for their active promotion of space and science education. The new flight of Teacher Liaisons will serve as advocates for space-themed education across the curriculum and will use Space Foundation-provided training and resources to further integrate space principles into the classroom. The highly regarded Space Foundation Teacher Liaison program has more than 270 active participants, including the 2012 flight. The teachers are selected by a panel comprising experienced Teacher Liaisons and representatives from the space industry and the military.

The 2012 Teacher Liaisons will be publicly recognized at the Space Foundation's 28th National Space Symposium, which is being held April 16-19 at The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, Colo.

In addition to the recognition activities, the 2012 Teacher Liaisons will participate in workshops and education programs at the 28th National Space Symposium. Following the Symposium, Teacher Liaisons can take advantage of specialized training and instruction at Space Foundation and NASA workshops with optional graduate-level credit; exclusive science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) professional development experiences with optional continuing education credit; and special space-oriented student programs created just for Teacher Liaisons.

The 2012 Flight of Teacher Liaisons includes:


  • Noah Albrecht, Bromley East Charter School, Thornton
  • Cami DeBise, Jack Swigert Aerospace Academy, Colorado Springs
  • Shelly Grandell, Horizon Middle School, Aurora
  • Amber Izzo, Antelope Trails Elementary, Colorado Springs
  • Bret Murray, STAR Academy, Colorado Springs
  • Neva Nardone, Lewis-Palmer Elementary School, Monument
  • Jessika Reynolds, GLOBE Charter School, Colorado Springs


  • Robin Little, Safety Harbor Elementary School, Safety Harbor*


  • Lynne Zielinski, Glenbrook North High School, Northbrook


  • Autumn Britt, Benjamin Stoddert Middle School, Waldorf
  • Karlyn Long, Benjamin Stoddert Middle School, Waldorf


  • Angela Voves-Anderson, University Avenue Elementary School, Blaine


  • Kim Moore, Gilmour Academy, Gates Mills
  • Jennifer Stormer, O.R. Edgington Elementary School, Englewood


  • James Johnson, Childrens Center for Treatment and Education, Custer City


  • Billy Hix, Motlow State Community College, Lynchburg


  • George Hademenos, Richardson High School, Richardson

Washington, D.C.

  • Trish Pride, Jefferson Middle School


  • Michele Wistisen, Casper Planetarium, Casper

Maharashtra, India

  • Vandana Suryawanshi, Vidya Valley School, Pune

To learn more about the Space Foundation Teacher Liaison program and the application process, visit

Pictured: New Space Foundation Teacher Liaison Vandana Suryawanshi (in middle, second from left) with her students and principal

This article is part of Space Watch: February 2012 (Volume: 11, Issue: 2).

Posted in Education