The College of Education is a force of educators, practitioners and scholars dedicated to positive change in our community and around the world.
UNO freshman and student-athlete Mads Nelson has the distinction of being the very first freshman to declare Biomechanics as their major as part of the program's launch in Fall 2015. A member of UNO’s track and field team, Nelson is a triathlete with her eyes set on competing in the 2020 Olympics in Japan. Not surprising, Nelson’s interest in biomechanics began because of her passion for running.
“It was really interesting to see how the mechanics of your body help you run,” she says. “Your running ability changes your form and changing your form can help you become a better runner.”
Nelson, who is planning to attend the Triathlon World Championships in Mexico next year, says it’s a challenge to balance both school and athletics because of how rigorous the biomechanics program is, but her professors are her best support group.
“I want to graduate in four years, so it’s a lot,” she explains. “It’s somewhere close to 17 or 19 hours a semester plus summers, but Dr. Yentes is really, really helpful.”
Jenna Yentes, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Biomechanics, is one of Nelson’s mentors. The faculty member has let Nelson shadow her work with prosthetics and how researchers are constructing their own prosthetics based off of research done in the labs located at the Biomechanics Research Building.
Elliott Ostler, Ed.D., Paul Kennedy Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, wins the 2016 Innovation, Development and Engagement Award from the University of Nebraska system. Ostler has spent more than two decades researching and applying the most effective non-traditional teaching techniques for students who struggle to learn mathematics and science content.
During this time, his unique instructional approaches has attracted the attention of institutions such as NASA, JPL, Texas Instruments and The College Board, all of whom have invited him to consult on projects ranging from curriculum review to product design. The application of his own research led to the development of an innovative mathematics teaching tool, which earned a U.S. Patent and ultimately evolved into a successful business venture called the Initiative for Instructional Inventions and Solutions. Since formalizing this business commitment, he has distributed nearly 11,000 of his unique teaching instruments nationwide and trained more than 1,000 mathematics teachers in its use. Today he continues to pursue his vision of reinventing STEM instruction through the development of innovative teaching tools.
Responsible Citizens: Engaging with the Community
Collaboration between COE faculty, staff and students and our local, regional, national and global communities for the exchange of knowledge and resources is a pillar of our mission. We are fully committed to creating value through mutually beneficial partnerships where information and expertise is shared and applied for the common good. Explore the college's leading efforts and collaborations below:
Amelia Squires is the UNO STEM Outreach Coordinator. Eureka! STEM, one of several successful STEM programs, empowers young women to engage in STEM activities and careers. "These youths come from underrepresented areas so bringing them here really helps them suceed." Participants take part in STEM activities, engage with college students and professors, and do internships. Amelia's hope is that,
"...through exposure to college students, and STEM careers and majors, students will have more confidence and be more open to pursuing STEM in college, and hopefully coming to UNO."
Amelia is a doctoral candidate at UNO, and applies her knowledge to track the success of Eureka! STEM participants. Stay connected with her work on twitter @UNOSTEM.
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