UNI to confer Yager Exemplary Teaching Recognition Awards

Posted on Monday, November 30th, 2015

Joyce Broell, secretary, College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences, 319-273-2725,

Lindsay Cunningham, Office of University Relations, 319-273-6728,

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa-- The Dr. Robert E. and Phyllis M. Yager Exemplary Teaching and Recognition Award, established by the Robert and Phyllis Education Fund for Excellence, will be awarded to two Iowa teachers on Friday, Dec. 4.

This year's recipients are Brooke Fischels, mathematics teacher from Ottumwa Community School District, and Chelsie Meyer, art teacher from Iowa Falls Community School District.

The intent of the award is to recognize exemplary K through 12 teaching by UNI graduates. It serves as a key role in supporting UNI's leadership in preparing teachers.

Nominees are selected by UNI faculty members and are UNI graduates in at least their fifth year of teaching in a K through 12 classroom. Awardees are selected based on teaching materials and student performance.

Fischels was nominated by Catherine Miller, associate professor of mathematics education. She earned her undergraduate degree in secondary mathematics education in 1999. Fischels is active in and out of the classroom, as a teacher and department head at Ottumwa High School and President Elect of the Iowa Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Her students learn to value mathematics as a necessary skill for the 21st century.

Meyer was nominated by Wendy Miller, assistant professor of art education. She earned her undergraduate degree in art education with an emphasis in sculpture, graduating magna cum laude in 2007. Meyer has successfully integrated technology in her art classes and offers choices in her curriculum so students can decide how to solve the problems she gives them. She has even presented research and collaborative projects at five state conferences.

Robert E. Yager, professor emeritus of science education in the College of Education at the University of Iowa where he taught for 50 years, received his B.A. degree in biology from UNI in 1950. Yager went on to earn his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in plant physiology from the University of Iowa. His research interests have focused on student motivation and attitudes toward science.