2010-06-04: Educational Awards Banquet

Michael Morgan
Educational Awards Banquet

Friday, June 4th, 2010

Mount St. Mary’s College, Donahue Center
10 Chester Place
Los Angeles, CA 90040

Awards will be presented to the top-placing students in the local High School Chemistry Olympiad, to their teachers, to local ACS scholars and to

Michael Morgan
Southern California Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year

6:00 p.m. Check-in
6:30 p.m. Dinner
7:30 p.m. Presentation of Awards

This year, we had almost 1,400 students representing 42 high schools throughout Los Angeles County take the Local ACS Exam in March. The top overall school for both first and second year students was Arcadia High School. From these students, 17 students representing 12 high schools were selected to take the National ACS Chemistry Exam on April 24th for a chance to be one of the 20 students nationwide who will be attending the Chemistry Camp in June. These students, as well as the top performers and teachers from each school of 10 or more participants, will be honored at our annual Educational Awards Banquet, along with the Outstanding High School Teacher of the Year, Michael Morgan. Biography follows.

Reservations: We have an Enchilada Buffet featuring chicken and cheese enchiladas with all the fixings. The cost of the dinner is $20 per person or $15 for students, cash or check at the door. Please call Nancy Paradiso in the Section Office at 310 327-1216 or email office@scalacs.org by Monday, May 31, 2010 for reservations. Note: Please honor your reservation. If you make a reservation and do not attend, you will be liable for the cost of the dinner.

Directions: From the Santa Monica Freeway (10), exit at Hoover and travel south about 3/4 mile. Turn left on Adams Blvd. and travel 3 blocks. Turn left on St. James Place and then right on St. James Park. From the Harbor (110) Freeway, exit at Adams Blvd. Travel 1/2 mile west on Adams. Turn right onto St. James Place and right on St. James Park. The Donohue Conference Center is on the northwest corner of St. James Park and Chester Place. Parking will be in the AAA Lot on the corner of St. James Place and St. James Park.

Michael Morgan
2010 High School Teacher of the Year
“Stamp of Approval”

Have you ever thought of your “chemical pedigree”? Who influenced you most in your choice to study chemistry? Chances are good that if you were to determine which chemist was the greatest influence to that person and so on and so on, you’d be able to find your chemical grandfather and his/her father, etc…

When I first began teaching way back in 1983, it was under the guidance of Frank Andrews at UC Santa Cruz as part of the undergraduate teaching program in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry there. As a chemical educator, Frank was my “academic father” so to speak and it turns out that he has many other “academic progeny” – my “chemical educator brothers and sisters”. I am incredibly honored and pleased to announce that Michael Morgan of Francisco Bravo Medical Magnet High School (Bravo) is the 2010 SCALACS Outstanding High School Chemistry Teacher – a fellow Banana Slug (UCSC alumnus)! Because of his longstanding dedication to high school chemical education in the greater LA area, Michael has already established a legacy in the LAUSD! Like the late Jaime Escalante, several of Michael’s former students now teach at Bravo! Furthermore, in a recent poll of potential teachers earning their credential at UCLA, a majority of them credited Mr. Morgan as their inspiration to become a teacher! He has produced one of the consistently highest averages for students on the annual high school Chemistry Olympiad exams. The list of science teams he has coached, professional activities (local, regional and national) and diverse areas of interest (from bridge building to chemical philately – stamps) is long, distinguished and dates back over two decades! This level of achievement by Michael is an obvious inspiration to his students to accomplish more with their lives. What greater tribute by them is there than “paying it forward” by becoming a teacher – one of Michael’s own “academic progeny”?!

I have often said that a measure of a person’s greatness can be measured in the number of lives positively touched. According to a nominating letter, “Michael Morgan deserves to be honored as the 2010 High School Chemistry Teacher of the Year for all that he has done for students, fellow teachers, and the field of chemistry education.” Congratulations Michael Morgan on your accomplishments and the legacy that you are already building toward a better chemically educated world!

– Paul Shin,
Education Chair