Jennifer Nilvo, School of Dreams Academy teacher

LOS LUNAS — School of Dreams Academy teacher Jennifer Nilvo has been selected as one of the U.S. Department of Defense STEM Ambassadors for the 2022-23 school year by the Society for Science to support STEM research programming, outreach and understanding of STEM communications.

A veteran teacher of 19 years, Nilvo plays many roles at the SODA. She has taught and mentored STEM research and STEM competitions to students from fourth to 12th grade. She has coordinated and taught the gifted and highly talented program and wrote STEM grants for her school district to build a STEM research lab on campus.

According to a news release, Nilvo has also organized STEM nights, workshops and career pathway activities, as well as coordinated a Girls Who Code Club for elementary, Spelling Bee and Read Across America, among other achievements. She also serves on many committees and associations in STEM to increase participation by underrepresented groups in STEM learning.

She holds a master’s degree in biochemistry, biology and education.

Nilvo is a disabled veteran of the United States Army and served 15 years as a signal corps officer.

As a Department of Defense STEM Ambassador, Nilvo will work with students who are military-connected and traditionally underrepresented in STEM, create lesson plans in collaboration with Science News Learning programming and engage in professional learning opportunities with other STEM educators.

“If my students can see further in this STEM world, it is because I showed them how to ‘stand on the shoulders of giants,’ and opened their minds to the vast amount of innovative STEM possibilities across our globe,” Nilvo said in a press release.

The 22 STEM Ambassadors will be working alongside TGR Foundation, a Tiger Woods charity, and DoD STEM.

Bringing decades of experience, the ambassadors will share and support the DoD’s educational outreach efforts through the Defense STEM Education Consortium.

TGR Foundation began managing the collaborative partnership between academia, industry, not-for-profit organizations and government in 2021 and will continue to lead the program for a second year. The DoD STEM Ambassador program aims to broaden STEM literacy and develop a diverse and agile workforce with the technical excellence to defend our nation.

“As the Society for Science expands its efforts to increase access to STEM education both nationally and globally, we are thankful to partner with the Defense Department and TGR Foundation, who share this goal,” said Maya Ajmera, president and CEO of Society for Science and publisher of Science News. “The work being done by our Ambassadors and Fellows will provide both students and educators more opportunity to succeed in STEM.”

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