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Merriwether Middle School Science Teacher Melissa Gojda Receives Nancy Smith-Mann Grant Award

Johnston, SC – When Merriwether Middle School sixth-grade science teacher Melissa Gojda applied earlier this year for a Dr. Nancy Smith-Mann “wish list” grant, offered by the Phi Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, she wasn’t quite sure what to expect. Gojda had received grants before, but this was her first time applying for a Nancy Smith-Mann grant, established both to honor the memory of the longtime Aiken County educator, and to encourage teachers to embrace innovation and creativity in their classrooms as she did. 

Gojda was thrilled when she received word her “wish list” proposal for a 360-degree classroom camera had been selected as one of the grant winners.

“I was very honored to receive the grant,” stated Gojda. “I was looking for a camera that would rotate three hundred sixty degrees so it would follow me around the classroom. I wanted to be able to move more easily around the classroom whether I was doing a lesson or a lab, then I could post a link in a student’s Google classroom if they were absent and they wouldn’t miss out on the class or lab. Students may also go back and review when they are studying for an assessment. It’s also a great resource for parents.” 

The camera will allow Gojda to maximize her movement, something that is already an important part of her teaching style.

“It’s great because I like to move around,” commented Gojda. “I don’t like to sit throughout the day, so it gives me a lot of freedom.”

“I’m very excited,” added Gojda. “This is going to be great. This was a wish from Dr. Nancy Smith-Mann that a certain amount of money would go to teachers each year so we appreciate that.” 

THANK YOU to the Phi Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma!


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