Belin-Blank Center Recognizes Students, Teachers, and Spencer Community School District
The annual Belin-Blank Center Recognition Ceremony was held in September at the Iowa Memorial Union on the University of Iowa campus. The ceremony recognized 700 students from Iowa and throughout the nation for exceptional performance and participation in one of several areas including performance with the Belin-Blank Exceptional Student Talent Search (BESTS), attendance at one of the Belin-Blank Center summer residential gifted programs, and involvement with the STEM Excellence and Leadership program.
Those students recognized from Spencer Community Schools included Marina Rosales, Davis Hogge, Owen Kierscht and Grace Hamilton. Additionally, recognized students were given the opportunity to honor a teacher they credited for having a profound influence on their lives. Joan Kimball, Chris Gude and Grant Muilenburg were each selected by a student, received an award and crossed the stage with the student by whom they were selected.
Student participation and success in these extraordinary programs is reflective of the education received through Spencer Community Schools. Programming directly associated with Belin-Blank and offered at Spencer Schools includes the STEM Excellence and Leadership initiative which is directed by Adam Gress and in its second year at Spencer Middle School. Teachers Brad Reiman and Chris Gude teach the after school STEM Academy, and Teresa Trierweiler is the Challenge coordinator who conducts all of the BESTS testing.
This year, three new awards were initiated, including Alumnus(na) of Distinction, Teacher of Distinction and School/District of Distinction. Spencer Community School District was selected to receive the inaugural award for District of Distinction. “It is quite an honor for Spencer Community Schools to be chosen by Belin Blank as the District of Distinction for the State of Iowa. This award is a tribute to the efforts of both students and staff,” remarked Superintendent Terry Hemann.