Current Fund for Teachers Fellows

Congratulations to the 2024 Fund for Teachers Fellows

Congratulations to the newest cohort of Oklahoma Fund for Teachers Fellows – preK-12 teachers who designed personal learning opportunities that stretch their students and strengthen school communities. Grant recipients are listed below along with their fellowship descriptions.

Tammy Acuff, language arts teacher, and Kirsten Harrison, library media specialist/teacher
Fort Gibson High School
Acuff, of Warner, and Harrison, of Fort Gibson, will explore sites in England and Scotland associated with literary figures and historical events to improve students’ ability to visualize and appreciate British literature and literary movements, understand the significance of place in literature, and inspire an interest in reading the classics.

Amanda Austin, English/journalism/language arts teacher
Edmond North High School
Austin, an Edmond resident, will experience the South African setting of Trevor Noah’s biography “Born a Crime” to deepen personal knowledge of South African history of apartheid and enhance a world literature curriculum with more authors of color.

Kim Dammann, STEM facilitator/teacher
Jenks West Elementary School
Dammann, a Jenks resident, will research the lives and work of Charles Perrault, Gabrielle Suzanne de Villeneuve, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, Victor Hugo and Walt Disney while exploring the history, culture and development of storytelling over time to create a multi-year storytelling unit for second, third and fourth grade classes visiting the STEM Lab.

Charlotte Freeman, teacher/librarian, and Amy Hardesty, gifted resource coordinator
Kennedy Elementary School (Norman Public Schools)
Freeman, a Moore resident, and Hardesty, a Norman resident, will visit Rome, Florence and Milan to explore the connection between art and science found in Renaissance art, ancient architecture and the scientific discoveries of Italy’s great thinkers to integrate art into the curriculum and build a STEAM-centered classroom.

Monica Graves, geometry teacher, Tulsa Boys’ Home 
Lisa Wright, math teacher, Charles Page High School
Sand Springs Public Schools
Graves and Wright, both of Sand Springs, will explore ancient Greek wonders including Olympia, Epidaurus and the Parthenon to integrate student passions in athletics, performing arts and engineering with real-world applications at the birthplace of geometry and then tailor these connections to student interests to make math both relevant and enjoyable.

Taylor Hoffer and Callie Mercer, art teachers
Claremore High School
Hoffer and Mercer, both of Claremore, plan to participate in a two-week portrait painting workshop with world-class artists in Rome to develop skills, historical context and contemporary approaches to painting that will allow to them maximize opportunities for students through a recently funded oil painting unit.

Alesa Murrow, physical education teacher
Washington Elementary School (Alva Public Schools)
Murrow, who is a resident of Hardtner, Kansas, will attend the Summer 2024 Olympics in Paris to research healthy lifestyles within different cultures and grassroots sports and activities for children to explore and enjoy beyond the norm in Oklahoma.

Pamela Reynolds, teacher
Cristo Rey Oklahoma City Catholic High School
Reynolds, a Norman resident, will complete a business internship in San Jose, Costa Rica, while improving Spanish proficiency to better communicate with Spanish-speaking families and gain efficiency and efficacy in advancing students’ language levels.

Emily Roiger, English teacher
Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences (Tulsa Public Schools)
Roiger, a Tulsa resident, will participate in The Creativity Workshop in Prague to develop tangible ways of stimulating creativity and creative thinking that will prepare students to become global citizens.

An Oklahoma Odyssey
Nathalie Lee digs for salt crystals during an excavation at the Great Salt Plains. Lee and her partner Janet DeMarco traveled Oklahoma landmarks, cultural centers, and historical sites to make Oklahoma history come alive and to provide depth to their teaching of Oklahoma social studies.
The Creativity Workshop
Diane Clark creates a story out of 10 random objects. Clark gathered tools and strategies for sparking creativity in the classroom to inspire her students.
Australian Conservation
Shanna Eicher handles a bird at the Birds of Prey exhibit at the Australia Zoo. Eicher learned about the dangers of climate change and how it negatively effects native bird species.
Earth & Space
Adam Peterson stands above the Grand Canyon at a stop on his 47-day journey to national parks and NASA centers to examine what makes habitats hospitable.
Wellness in Japan
Mary Trudgeon stands with a Shinto high priest after a ceremony during a Japanese immersion program that explores how mindfulness and meditation can be used to reduce student stress in the classroom and life.
Sneak on the Lot
Mary Henson learns lighting and photography techniques while on-scene at the Hollywood's Sneak On the Lot workshop for teacher. Henson hopes to spark her student's interest in the film industry and other creative careers.
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I would describe this fellowship as a game changing event in my education career. I was stretched during the application process, learning to work alongside a colleague after hours for weeks on end, travel around the world without my family (while being pregnant!) and LEAN-ing into doing hard things. I also learned a lot about what I can physically and mentally handle. All of this happened because of the amazing donors who invested in me! I tell everyone I meet about this experience!

For more information about Fund for Teachers – Oklahoma Program, contact Lauren Dow at or call (405) 236-0006.