Grand Rapids teacher wins Seagate Excellence in Science Mentoring award | News

Lori Grabarkewitz, a Robert J. Elkington Middle School educator, won the prestigious Seagate Excellence in Science Mentoring Award at the 84th Annual Minnesota State Science and Engineering Fair (SSEF). This award recognizes an outstanding science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teacher who finds creative ways to stimulate student interest in scientific research and discovery. Teachers are nominated by students, parents and school staff. Prize winners will receive $ 1,000, a trophy and a Seagate hard drive. Each teacher’s school or science program will also receive $ 1,000.

One student who nominated Ms. Grabarkewitz noted that she was “a fantastic role model for me as she is a strong woman in science. She teaches science in middle school and has been doing so for over 20 years. It is great to see a woman in a powerful profession who inspires students to study and excel every day. “

The SSEF 2021 was hosted virtually by the Minnesota Academy of Science (MAS) March 23-30. Full SSEF results can be found at

Seagate representative Nikki Shaffer announced the Seagate Award winners at a live SSEF awards ceremony on March 30th. Seagate is a longtime sponsor and supporter of the SSEF and a major sponsor of the event. “Seagate’s continued support is instrumental in advancing science education and student research in Minnesota,” said LAS Maupin, executive director of MAS. Seagate staff acted as volunteer judges during the SSEF, reviewing student projects from home to provide feedback and identify award winners.

In addition to the Excellence in Science Mentoring Award, Seagate sponsors two other SSEF awards. Seagate recognizes excellent scientific research conducted by students competing for the first time for the Seagate Emerging Scientist Award. The Seagate Rising Star Award recognizes two aspiring student scholars whose projects demonstrate a high level of difficulty, thoroughness, complexity, creativity, innovation and effective communication.

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