Leslie Brinson, 2011 Life Sciences Award

Written by on August 15, 2011 in 2011, Educator, Life Sciences Award

Leslie Brinson

Leslie Brinson

Biology Teacher
North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics
Durham, North Carolina

As an experienced teacher looking back on her career, Leslie sees the importance of activities outside the classroom–whether field trips, after-school research projects or science competitions. What these activities have in common is that the students are engaged, physically and mentally in things they elect to do. Taking rural students to State competitions did more to inspire future scientists than any classroom experience she could provide. These days the highlight of the school year is when she leads students to Belize where they are immersed in research projects on the coral reef.

Leslie has been teaching at North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM) since 1995, and has come to believe there is no better educational environment. In this residential location, students are provided a competitive and nurturing pedagogical setting to conduct their own research and pursue a myriad of science competitions within North Carolina and beyond. Because she has found inspiration from her colleagues, Leslie has enthusiastically embraced a key mission of the school–providing outreach to biology teachers through the State.

Leslie’s workshops include AP Biology, GLOBE, Biotechnology and SITE (a State developed curriculum for teachers in underperforming schools). She received the NCSSM Award for Exceptional Contribution to Outreach and the NABT Outstanding Biology Teacher Award for NC as a result of her support of her fellow teachers.

Leslie received a BS in Science Education from Florida State University as well as an M Ed in Science Education and MS in Botany from the University of Florida. She received a CAS in Science Education from East Carolina University.

The Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation is honored to have had the assistance of the following distinguished individuals serving on the 2011 Life Sciences Awards Evaluation Committee:

  • Russell A. Bantham, Esquire
    McLean, VA
  • Alan Bronstein
    Chemistry Teacher
    Central High School
    Philadelphia, PA
  • Christine Leyden
    Senior Vice President and Chief Accreditation Officer
    Washington, D.C.


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