Teaching should be held in high esteem: What other profession prepares the future leaders and workforce of America?”
Camden Hanzlick-Burton’s pivotal moment came when, as a senior in high school, he took Advanced Placement (AP) biology. His teacher, a 40-year veteran of the school, “allowed us to work on challenging, inquiry-based labs and relied on our ability to solve it scientifically. It was the first time I felt like I had done real science.” Camden decided to pursue biology in college and, eventually, to become that teacher who inspires students. At the University of Kansas, Camden had the opportunity to conduct scientific research and teach at several levels of the K-12 system. “I’ve developed as a person and an educator whose primary goal is to inspire students to be critical thinkers and inquisitive lifelong learners.”
Camden is a 2012 Kansas Teacher of Promise and two-time recipient of the AFCEA (Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association) STEM teacher’s scholarship. As a member of an improvisational troupe, he performed on the stage through high school and college. Camden’s longest theatrical experience was as a member of “OUTRAGE: A journey through teen dating violence and sexual assault,” a play aimed at informing the community about dating violence, sexual assault and healthy relationships.
Camden earned a BS in biology and his teaching credential from the University of Kansas and is beginning his career in his native state as a freshman biology teacher at Olathe Northwest High School, a public school of nearly 2,000 students. “A teacher in a large public school has the responsibility of reaching a wide diversity of students and doing their best to create an equitable classroom where everyone can learn.”
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