WVSTA Conference



NOVEMBER 2nd through 4th

WVSTA Fall Conference 2017 will be held in Wheeling, WV, November 2nd – 4th at the beautiful Oglebay Resort.

Join us for the WVSTA Fall conference for the latest in science content, teaching strategies, networking opportunities, and new this year are poster presentations on current research to enhance and expand your professional growth. Take advantage of this unique opportunity to collaborate with science education leaders and your peers.  At WVSTA you will gain experience in innovative teaching strategies for elementary classrooms, middle school classrooms, and the high school classrooms.  Come for the sessions, the vendors, and the speakers…stay for the fun and camaraderie of your peers in science.

Key Note Speaker: Lonnie G. Thompson, Distinguished University Professor, School of Earth Sciences Senior Research Scientist, Byrd Polar Research Center

Lonnie Thompson at Qori Kalis glacier. His research team has been measuring the melting of this glacier over the last 20 years. Elevation of the Quelccaya ice cap is 18,700 feet. Peruvian Andes, August 2000.
Lonnie Thompson at Qori Kalis glacier. His research team has been measuring the melting of this glacier over the last 20 years. Elevation of the Quelccaya ice cap is 18,700 feet. Peruvian Andes, August 2000.

Lonnie G. Thompson is one of the world’s foremost authorities on paleoclimatology and glaciology.  He has led 62 expeditions during the last 40 years, conducting ice-core drilling programs in the Polar Regions as well as on tropical and subtropical ice fields in 16 countries including China, Peru, Russia, Tanzania and Papua, Indonesia (New Guinea). Thompson and his team were the first to developed lightweight solar-powered drilling equipment for the acquisition of histories from ice fields in the high Andes of Peru and on Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. The results from these ice-core-derived climate histories, published in more than 230 articles, have contributed greatly toward improved understanding of Earth’s climate system, both past and present.  This is a prerequisite for efforts to predict future changes.  Thompson’s research has resulted in major revisions in the field of paleoclimatology, in particular, by demonstrating how tropical regions have undergone significant climate variability, countering an earlier view that higher latitudes dominate climate change.  He has received numerous honors and awards.  In 2005, he received the John and Alice Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement and he was selected by Time magazine and CNN as one of Americas Best in science and medicine.  Lonnie is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (2005) and in 2007 he was awarded the U.S. National Medal of Science, the highest honor the U.S. awards to American scientists. In 2008 he received the Dan David Prize (jointly with Ellen Mosley-Thompson) and the Seligman Crystal award, the highest professional award given in Glaciology.  In 2009 Lonnie was elected as a foreign member of the Chinese National Academy of Sciences and received the ‘Mountain Hero’ award from The Mountain Institute in Washington D.C in 2013.  In April of 2012 he received the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Earth and Environmental Science, in September, 2012 the Friendship Award and in January 2013 the International Science and Technology Cooperation  Award (the highest award given to a foreign scientist by the Chinese government) both from the People’s Republic of China.

Opening Speaker: Melinda M. Higgins  Established Scientist, U. S. Department of EnergyScience and Technology Policy FellowMelindaMHiggins

As an appointed Established Scientist/Science and Technology Policy Fellow in the Office of Economic Impact and Diversity at the U.S. Department of Energy, Melinda works across program offices to support minority education, minority business development and civil rights. Her background in STEM education and research segues well with the mission of her office—working to ensure equal access to STEM opportunities for all students. Our STEM engagement and outreach efforts work to expose, engage and inspire underrepresented and underserved populations in STEM fields so they can be aware and open to pursue STEM careers for economic empowerment, especially in the energy fields.

Prior to her appointment, Melinda was a STEM educator for 22 years at The Harpeth Hall School in Nashville, TN, an all-girls independent school. She taught chemistry, biology and engineering and served as the Science Department Chairperson for 10 years. Melinda also conducted Engineering research at Vanderbilt University for 7 summers and wrote, published and implemented curriculum based on her research.   During her teaching tenure, she was chosen as a 2013-2014 Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellow at NASA Office of Education, working at both Goddard Space Flight Center and Headquarters. Melinda worked on various projects at NASA, from interagency collaborations and experiential learning opportunities to leading a preliminary feasibility analysis focusing on a model for professional development for educators at NASA Centers. She also had the opportunity this summer to work at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as an Education Program Specialist, writing activity challenge curriculum to augment inventor cards and facilitating professional development opportunities for educators in Intellectual Property/STEM arenas.

Melinda received her M.Ed. in Science Education from Vanderbilt University and a B.S in Chemistry from Spring Hill College.


Good Zoo field trip on Friday, November 3rd, 8-10 a.m.

with hedgehog (2)

EDUZOO – Visit with the Good Zoo’s curator of education to learn about programming available for teachers and students.  Meet several of the zoo’s ambassador animals up-close and view the holiday LASER show in the zoo’s Benedum Theater.  Participants can spend the remainder of the program touring the Good Zoo at their own pace.  Staff members will be available throughout the zoo for questions and information.

Dr. Bob field trip on Friday, November 3rd, 1:00 p.m.- 5:00 p.m.


Explore the geology of the northern panhandle with Dr. Bob Behling, retired West Virginia University geology professor, and Dr. Deb Hemler, Fairmont State University geoscience professor.  Did glaciers reach WV?  Did the Ohio River always flow south?  What age are the rocks here?  These, and other questions, will be answered during our afternoon in the field.  In the immortal words of Dr. Bob “It’s a Great Day for A Field Trip!”.    Note: wear sturdy shoes and bring rain gear!

Grave Creek Mound Archaeological Complex field trip on Saturday, November 4th, departing from 8:30 – 11:30 a.m. 

GraveCreekMoundBrightwell Dec 2015

*Brightwell, 2015

The Grave Creek Mound dates to around 250 to 150 BC and is one of the largest conical burial mounds in the United States.  The Complex is also home to the Delf Norona Museum, which tells the story of the Mound and the people who created it. In addition, state-wide archaeology from a range of time periods is featured in a display of artifacts and photographs from the museum’s Research Facility. The field trip will include a guided tour of the Mound and museum, along with a stop at the research lab observation window, and a sampling of hands-on activities that can be reserved by groups visiting the complex.  


Pre-Registration for the 2017 conference is available below. Register now at the appropriate link ~ Join us for an amazing conference!

Regular Attendee: Regular Attendee Link

Full-Time Student or Retired Teacher: Full-time Student OR Retired Teacher Link

Vendor: Vendor Link

Guest OR Vendor Rep: Guest OR Vendor Rep Link










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