Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching



CHOHLA MOLL: My students come from over 100  villages and   leave their families, communities, and 

cultures to get an education at my school. We are their teachers, but we are also much more. In all that I do, I try to make the sacrifice they and their families have made worth it. I represent my family, the community that raised me, and my school community. This award is a symbol to my students and my children that if you do what you love and you love what you do, you can be successful and have fun doing it!

For more information on how to apply for the PRESIDENTIAL


or nominate someone else, go to PAEMST or contact Joey Jigliotti for science or Sandy Schoff for math. There are mentors available to help guide you in the intricate process.

The 2021 nomination period is for elementary teachers and is open from now until March 1, 2021. Applications are due April 1, 2021. Don't wait! The process of applying is itself professional development in its purest form, away from the oversight of administrators or actual instructors. It is a time for self-reflection and celebrating your intrinsic gifts as a teacher. Keep science and math education moving forward and in the news!

If you have applied before, please note that there have been some changes made. These include the allowance of up to one break in their video, opportunity to respond to state-level reviews through an addendum in early June, more detail provided in instructions related to responding to the Five Dimensions of Outstanding Teaching prompts.

See the Hall of Fame for past Alaska recipients of the award.

2015 Recipient of Presidential Award for

Excellence in Science Teaching for Alaska


Catherine Walker has been teaching Integrated Science at Romig Middle School for the past 10 years as well as Applied Technology and Health.

Catherine fosters student interest in science and supports them in becoming problem solvers and life long learners. Students in her classroom gather, analyze, and communicate meaningful data that has an impact on their community. Students explore STEM professions that interest them and learn the skills and knowledge they need to achieve success. Teaching at one of the most diverse middle schools in the country, Catherine feels it is important to inspire traditionally underrepresented students toward STEM careers.

Catherine is National Board Certified and was part of a teacher-leader team completing the three-year Academy Creating Teacher Scientists working closely with scientists at Battelle-Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, WA, on sustainability issues. She also completed the National Academy of Curriculum Leadership focusing on science education reform.

Catherine has a B.S., cum laude, in Biology from Brandeis University and completed the Semester in Environmental Science at the MBL in Woods Hole, MA. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in Mali for Natural Resource Management. She also taught in the village school, trained volunteers, and revised and implemented an improved NRM program. She earned her M.A.T. from University of Alaska, Anchorage.

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