Ms. Eddy works as a Science Teacher at the Lowell High School, located in Lowell,
Massachusetts, which is the second largest high school in the Commonwealth. LHS
encompasses a cultural and economic diverse neighborhood and many students face great difficulty working towards their educational goals. Issues include graduating or attending college in the challenging field of energy and environmental studies. Ms. Eddy provides a solid science foundation of knowledge as a teacher and advances opportunities as a mentor to her students through multiple environmental programs, including her involvement in the school’s Environmental Club.
Since 2005, her responsibilities as a Science Teacher at Lowell includes applying
scientific methods from disciplines such as biology, chemistry and other fields of
sciences to assist the student in the study of the environment and its current problems.
In addition, she collaborates with other disciplines within LHS, such as the Mathematics Department to develop cross curriculum activities that advance the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) program. In a successful program, where she is the Counselor for the school’s Environmental Club, she provides educational and career guidance to all interested students. In one example, she has worked with the UML( University of Massachusetts-Lowell) and the Audubon Society to promote E&EE (Energy and Environmental Education) issues. This includes previously developing a Lowell Earth Day event. This program allows students to take advantage of networking with environment professionals; some of whom are green technology and solar energy companies. Due to its success, it is now an annual event where all the students in the city of Lowell can participate in this exercise which includes a parade.
Incorporating the “A” for Arts in the STEAM acronym, some of her high school students created puppets to use in the parade or worked with local elementary school students to help them create crafts for the Earth Day event. This “pay forward” model not only engaged the LHS participants, but encouraged the next generation of students to develop an interest in E&EE issues.
Another local partnership exists with the Senator William X. Wall Experiment Station
(WES) in Lawrence, MA. WES, formerly the Lawrence Experiment Station, is the first Environmental Research Station in the United States. Since its opening in 1887, the Station has a tradition of educational training and community outreach. Prior to her career as a teacher, Ms. Eddy worked as an environmental chemist and laboratory scientist providing analytical support for the MassDEP (Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection). Because of this background, she was able to transfer many of the analytical skills that she developed as an environmental scientist at WES, to be
incorporated into her teaching curriculum at LHS for the benefit of her students. Even after Barbara moved on to Public Education, she maintains a professional working relationship with many of the scientists at WES. Barbara participates in the MassDEPWES Community Outreach program where excess scientific supplies, such as equipment, instrumentation and reagents, can be provided to public institutions upon request. Due to her continued involvement, our laboratory has provided thousands of dollars worth of testing materials over the years to LI-IS. Lowell High would not have benefitted from this program were it not for the continuing coordinating efforts of Ms. Eddy.
In addition, as an Adjunct Professor at MCC, (Middlesex Community College), she taught Environmental Science classes in the evening at the Lowell location. Because of her affiliation with the college, she is able to share this unique high level educational opportunity with her students. Some students have never had a chance to experience a rapid transfer of information directed from a college curriculum down into the high school classroom. Her association with MCC, and her ability to join these two distinct programs allows this transfer of E&EE information to happen quickly.
The above are examples of how she is able to draw fom her extensive network of current science, colleagues and contacts for the educational benefit of her students. Ms. Eddy is the rare individual who has a diverse background in both science education and work history. Formally trained in the fields of Biology, Chemistry and Microbiology, she has experiences working in production laboratories, research, and academia. These skills allow her to tie all aspects of education and the workplace together with a
culmination in the Environmental Club. It is with these attributes that she is the ideal
nominee in providing guidance to budding scientists in the field of Energy and
I enthusiastically give Ms. Eddy my highest recommendation as a nominee for the 2017 Secretary’s Award.