"Mr. Brauser has so much knowledge that I want to get as much as I can. It is just too much to learn in one year." What higher testimonial of teaching effectiveness can one receive from a student who had signed up for another year of a course that he had already taken and in which he earned an "A"? Bradley Brauser is the type of teacher who truly exemplifies everything that the late Jimmie Pigg stood for as he introduced Oklahoma students to the wonders of scienceand fish. It is most appropriate that Brad, a science teacher at Westmore High School, is the first recipient of The Jimmie Pigg Memorial Award for Outstanding Science Teaching. Fittingly, he was presented the award in front of his students and fellow teachers at the annual meeting of the Oklahoma Junior Academy of Science in March. His excellence was again recognized at the annual meeting of the Academy in November.
Bradley Brauser has taught for 42 yearsmiddle school, high school, and college/university. A review of the successes his students have had reveals why he is an ideal recipient for the award. Since 1988-1989, his students have won 513 state science awards, have been state champions for 11 of the last 12 years in the OAS Junior Academy, and have been state champions at the Oklahoma State Science Fair for 9 of the last 11 years. Six students placed in the NASA awards for Outstanding Science Students. Others have placed at the International Science and Engineering Fair. Nineteen of his students have published their research _ one paper being entered in the Congressional Record _ and 17 individuals have found their way to national laboratories where they are active, productive scientists. Bradley himself has been honored by 23 education awards and 4 community awards.
Those of you who knew Jimmie knew of his patience in explaining science to his "students." Brad Brauser "goes that extra mile" as well and it pays off because his students know they will most likely earn an award in science competitions. He gets them to do the extra work that means the difference in the quality of their projects. This effort does not end at the end of the school day. His students know they can call on him for help after school hours, and know they are welcome at his home. The consequence of this caring is that he has become a role model for his colleagues and his students. The letters of recommendation all refer to him as an exceptional individual whom students respect and admire.
Although he was describing Brad, one of the writers of letters recommending him for the award might have been describing Jimmie: "Because of Mr. Brauser's expertise in the field of science, his fervor for his chosen field of teaching, and his ability to pass along this enthusiasm to his students, the young people who have passed through his classroom will be well equipped to succeed not only in the field of science but also in life." Brad Brauser is, indeed, a more than worthy honoree for The Jimmie Pigg Memorial Award for Outstanding Science Teaching.
Thomas L. Warren
Department of English
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, Oklahoma 74078