Science teacher honored for environmental work - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Mid-Michigan science teacher honored for environmental work

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(10/19/11) - A teacher at Genesee County's Beecher High School got a nice surprise Wednesday when he was recognized for being one of the 20 best environmental educators in the nation.

The Ligon Outdoor Center was a perfect place for Don Hammond to take his students Wednesday. He's committed to teaching them how important environmental stewardship is and how science is a part of everyday life. So imagine how happy he was when the General Motors Foundation and Earth Force named him an outstanding environmental educator.

"As you can see, the kids are excited to be outside learning. They would be able to tell you this is the kind of stuff they like to do at Beecher," Hammond said.

Hammond received a nice plaque, but something else made him smile.

"On behalf of General Motors and Chevrolet we are making arrangements to make this Volt available to you and your classroom for future studies," Mark Pulice of General Motors Flint Metal Center said to a small crowd gathered for the presentation.

Hammond's passion to make science interesting caught the eye of Earth Force, which searches the nation for people like him.

"One of the things we wanted to do is embrace and acknowledge educators who do this tremendous work," said Lisa Bardwell, president and CEO of Earth Force.

"He cares about stuff. If you don't care, it makes him sad that you don't care and he wants to make you care. He's like one of the best," said Mel Rawls, a Beecher High School senior.

Hammond says it's always heartwarming to be honored for something you love doing.

"It's really cool. I'm really overwhelmed with the fact that I'm recognized for the work I do. I don't do it for awards. I do it for the kids. I do it because I believe in being an environmental steward," Hammond said.

General Motors also presented a check for $2,000 to the Ligon Outdoor Center for its role in teaching environmental science.     

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