On the first Saturday of February in 2018, over 150 teachers gathered for the 8th Annual VBTA Spring Conference. The day began with a touching tribute to the VBTA’s Principle Investigator (PI), Dr. Michael Lichtenstein. Dr. Lichtenstein was the VBTA’s PI from the very beginning and was the founder of its umbrella program, Teacher Enrichment Initiatives (TEI). The tribute was followed by an amazing keynote presentation, titled, GED to PhD, from UIW’s Dr. Jessica Ibarra. Dr. Ibarra talked about her life’s journey and evolution as an educator, all the while motivating the room full of teachers.
The spring conference’s late morning and afternoon were jam-packed with educational workshop sessions. The workshops available were for teachers of all grade levels (K-12). Workshop presenters ran the gamut from local scientists to local teachers. The workshop topics were diverse, everything from Dr. Travis Block’s stem cell workshop, to NEISD’s Science Specialist, Debbie Vann’s vocabulary workshop. In the middle of the workshop sessions was a delicious, free lunch catered by Central Market.
The closing plenary session was so much fun! Filled with many awesome door prizes! However, the highlight of the session was when VBTA’s program director, Rose Riggs and the VBTA teacher leaders presented the “Teacher of the Year” award to St. Mary’s Hall teacher, Jennifer Lee! Check out Mrs. Lee’s bio here.
This year’s spring conference, like the past year’s conferences, was a truly rewarding one. Not only for the local teachers that participated, but also for the VBTA teachers and VBTA staff members. It’s always an awesome sight to see so many motivated educators hungry for knowledge and desiring to network with other like-minded individuals. See you all again next year!