FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Gordon W. Mitchell School’s (East Bridgewater, Mass.)Tori Cameron has been named the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies Massachusetts STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) Teacher of the Year. She was honored today by Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito in a virtual STEM session and her school will receive $5,000 to be used for STEM education. Cameron will also serve for one year on the governor’s STEM Council.
“I am thrilled and humbled to receive this incredible honor,” Cameron said. “I want to thank the Kraft family and Raytheon Technologies for their support of STEM programs and for teachers overall. I also would like to congratulate the other finalists and nominees for this prestigious award.”
Cameron teaches grades 3-6 and her classroom is called the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) Lab, where she works to expose her students to real-life projects and different career paths. She runs the Girls Who STEAM Club, the ESports Club, the Media Club, the Gardening Club, and hosts a Family STEAM Night. She also runs weeks of summer programs, including a Creating Camp, Green Screen Video Making, Cozy STEAM and STEAM for Littles (kindergarteners).
Cameron hosts a podcast called STEAM Up the Classroom, teaches STEAM graduate classes at Fitchburg State University and volunteers (via Skype) as the program director and professor of STEAM for the Metropolitan University of Somalia in Africa. She also published her first book, Awesome Brain Games for Kids: STEAM Puzzles and Facts for Curious Minds.
“My students inspire me and motivate me to be better at my job,” Cameron stressed. “They fuel my fire to want to bring more to the school and do more for their education. My goal is to motivate my students to want to learn and be open to new ideas. I do this by trying to connect with each of my 650 students. I love my job and I want every student to feel just as excited as I do to come to my classroom ready to learn and eager to try new things.
“Teaching is something I am so passionate about, something for which I advocate and something that positively changes lives,” Cameron continued. “My passion for STEM bleeds into so many aspects of my life and I strive to help every student learn skills they will need to be competitive in today’s world. Throughout their four years at Gordon W. Mitchell School, students will complete countless projects that introduce them to new topics and ideas so they are exposed to different career paths.”
Cameron was a finalist for the Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year award in 2019.
Moriah Illsley, The Hall’s Education Coordinator, congratulated Cameron for being named the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the Year.
“Tori is such a passionate, dedicated teacher and now author,” Illsley said. “That passion is on display at her school and even beyond those walls. Her enthusiasm is contagious and she is fostering a love of STEM in her young students. There are so many amazing STEM teachers in our state, but we are thrilled to name Tori as the 2020 Massachusetts STEM Teacher of the year. On behalf of the selection committee, I want to congratulate her for this award.”
Cameron was chosen from a group of five finalists. The other four teachers’ schools will each receive $1,000 for STEM education courtesy of Raytheon Technologies.
Those teachers are:
- Kelly Bower – Codman Academy Charter Public School (Dorchester)
- Jim Gorman – Nipmuc Regional High School (Upton)
- Shannon Morey – Abbott Lawrence Academy (Lawrence)
- Kathy Wilson – Gates Middle School (Scituate)
Hall Executive Director Bryan Morry thanked fellow selection committee members Allison Little and Keith Connors from the Department of Higher Education, Alexis Lian from the Executive Office of Education, Meto Raha from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and Illsley for their work in selecting this year’s STEM Teacher of the Year.
“Each of these individuals has shown a tremendous commitment to honoring excellence in STEM education and recognizing and supporting some of the best educators in the state,” Morry said. “They commit a great deal of time and energy to this process, and we could not complete it without their efforts.”
The Patriots Hall of Fame launched the STEM Teacher of the Year program in October of 2012 when Robert Kraft announced the initiative at the Massachusetts STEM Summit, held that year at Gillette Stadium. Cameron is the eighth recipient of the award. Kelly Powers from the Advanced Math & Science Academy Charter School was the inaugural winner in 2013. Other past winners include Doug Scott from Natick High School in 2014, Kerry Murphy from Oliver Ames High School in 2015, David Mangus from Brockton High School in 2016, Kathleen Malone from Derby Academy in Hingham in 2017, Erin Cronin from Revere High School in 2018, and Amanda Hough from Mashpee Middle-High School in 2019. The STEM Teacher of the Year award is part of the Patriots Hall of Fame’s education program, which offers students in grades 4-12 standards-based educational modules in a fun, entertaining setting. The Hall typically hosts more than 20,000 school field trip visitors annually.