April 2013
Outliers: Students in ACTION

Outliers: Students in ACTION is a monthly publication during the academic year highlighting the students and events in the Science and Math Education in ACTION Choose Ohio First program at BGSU. 

Dan close up
Dr. Brahier addressing Cohort 3
Note from the ACTION Director

The inaugural ACTION Spring Seminar held this February was an overwhelming success. For the first time in the history of the program, we had almost every ACTION student in the same room at the same time - nearly 100 scholars. The overarching theme of the evening was "change." BGSU's President Mary Ellen Mazey addressed the students, speaking of changes taking place on our campus and encouraging everyone to do their best at what they're currently doing because we can't always anticipate the changes that will occur in the future. After her question-and-answer session, I concluded the evening by presenting a rundown on changes that are taking place in the schools of Ohio as well as in teacher education. Specifically, I talked about how assessments are evolving - from the tests children are being asked to take in school to the performance measures that are being conducted for teacher licensure.


Another common "change" about which I am frequently asked by our students and their parents (particularly when meeting with prospective students) is the funding structure of Choose Ohio First and the ACTION program. Just within the past few weeks, Governor Kasich has delivered his budget plan for Ohio for the next two years. For all of us in the ACTION program, the news is good. The governor has identified four programs that he considers to be priorities for the State of Ohio, and the Choose Ohio First scholarship program, which funds ACTION, is one of them. In fact, he has proposed a modest increase in the funding of the program over the next two years. We simply must continue to attract Ohio students into science and mathematics related fields and, specifically at BGSU, to become well-prepared teachers. So, in answer to the question of whether it appears that the climate in Columbus is positive for ACTION, I would definitely say "yes." Of course, final funding levels will not be determined until the legislature votes on the budget in June.


When Cohort 1 was recruited just four years ago, they were told that we "hoped" ACTION would be around for their entire college experience. No one was certain back then as to whether there would be a Cohort 2. Things have changed so much since then - and all for the better. Four cohorts later, we continue to grow and refine the program to make it stronger for everyone. I am excited to bring Cohort 5 to campus this July and welcome them into ACTION for their freshman year. And I am thankful for legislators from both sides of the political aisle, as well as our Colleges of Education & Human Development and Arts & Sciences, for their continued support of our ever-changing program at BGSU.

Lacee Lovins - Cohort 2
Middle Childhood Education - Science & Math


When did you decide to come to BGSU? I played on a travel softball team when I was young and we came to the Perry Field House. Ever since then, I planned to come to BGSU. I knew the education program is excellent, and when I found out about ACTION that made it even better.


What has been your favorite part of ACTION so far? Probably the Summer Bridge. I gained great relationships. It opened my eyes to new people. I was glad to already know people when classes started in the fall, especially as a commuter. I had people to lean on. The past few years I've had classes with some Cohort 1 students and we have gotten very close.

Because you had so many college credits as an entering freshman, you are graduating in three years. Yes, I took many PSEOP classes my junior and senior years in high school. The past three years have gone very fast. Each year seems to go by quicker. I got engaged at Christmas and will marry my boyfriend of seven years in June 2014. I'm excited to be entering a new season and having a year of teaching under my belt before getting married.

We are so proud of you for maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA during your three years at BGSU. What has been your "secret"? One of the biggest things that helped me in all my classes (and especially in Methods last semester) was not to procrastinate. If something was due, I tried to get it done a week in advance. Some of it was simply going to class and doing all the work to learn the material.


You are currently Student Teaching. Tell us about your experience. I love my fifth grade placement at Pettisville School District, which is about 10 minutes from my house. The kids are great and I really like this age group. They are always bringing me gifts and they do say the darndest things! Initially there were some challenges with my Cooperating Mentor Teacher (CMT), but after clarifying expectations we now respect each other and work well together. At the outset I thought I definitely wanted to teach math, but science is getting more appealing with all the fun hands-on experiments at this grade level. I also coached girls' basketball for both the fifth grade and the high school, and even though it kept me very busy on top of Student Teaching, I loved it and hope to coach wherever I get a job after graduation.

Tell us about your ACTION Capstone Research Project? I have been researching the impact of read alouds on motivational engagement in the classroom. At the conclusion of my research, I have found that in my classroom read alouds did enhance their desire to be engaged in the topic.


What are your plans after graduation? I plan to look for a teaching job near Wauseon, possibly at Pettisville if something opens up or another local school district. This summer I will be working with basketball camps and of course continuing to plan a wedding!

Tyler Stevens - Cohort 4
AYA Math Education 


Tell us about your background. I grew up in a rural farm area with 70 kids in my graduating class. I was involved in 4-H and raised chickens. Being from such a small town, I did not get to experience much diversity until I came to BGSU. As a future teacher, this exposure to different types of people has been good for me.


What has been your favorite part of BGSU so far?  



The main reason I came to BGSU was because of ACTION, and my favorite thing has been the connections I've made with people through ACTION. The people I surround myself with are great.


What do you like to do in your spare time? I love sports - to play and to watch. Baseball is my favorite. I started playing when I was 4 years old. I considered playing varsity at BGSU but was concerned about the huge time commitment so instead tried out for the Club Baseball team. It still takes a lot of time. We started practicing in January and recently moved our practices outside. I play shortstop and even though it's a lot of work, I love being able to play. I went to Florida with the team to participate in spring training and our first game is coming up.


What has been your favorite part of ACTION so far? Before I came, I was really excited about the Summer Bridge. I wanted to get to know people before school started and it gave me the chance to do that. The entire summer experience was awesome. The class sessions were very helpful. During Dr. Underwood's reptile session at first I was hesitant, but soon warmed up to the critters and was in the middle of it all. I liked it so much that I decided to be in Dr. Underwood's freshman research group to study geckos.


Can you give us a few more details about your freshman research project prior to the COF Research Symposium? Our project has been to test the rate of growth of geckos based on different types of food. There are three different test groups and we're comparing their growth rates. Our skill at catching them has improved because in addition to feeding them, we weigh them every other week. You'll have to come to the Research Symposium to hear more!


What made you want to be a teacher? Halfway through my junior year, I knew I wanted to teach. My science teacher that year was my mentor. He inspired kids. He cared about me as a person and a student. He was the guy I wanted to be. I had considered dentistry, but my decision to be a science teacher was solidified.


What is your favorite pizza place and restaurant in Bowling Green? I think the only pizza place I've been is Marcos! And, I really like Wendy's Restaurant - the Double Baconator is my all-time favorite.


Share a fun fact about yourself. I recently hit 6 foot! As a high school junior, I was 5'4" and weighed 100 pounds. I'm pretty sure I am still growing, which is a good thing for baseball.


Any advice for Cohort 5 as they enter ACTION this summer? Enjoy it! Take the sessions and each activity seriously; yet, at the same time have fun with everything to make the most of it.  

Cohort Updates


With an April 12 deadline for final research papers to be submitted to faculty advisors, Cohort 1 scholars are putting finishing touches on their capstone projects. After summarizing and drawing conclusions from data collected, students will assemble it all together in a final paper that includes six components: (a) Title Page with an Abstract, (b) Introduction, (c) Literature Review, (d) Methodology, (e) Data and Analysis, and (f) Conclusion/Implication. It is a very busy time as they prepare for their last month of being BGSU students before their May 4 graduation.


Brittany Taylor gives details of her capstone research topic to her peers in Cohort 2
Cohort 2 had the opportunity to share their research topics with their peers during a Common Time session in early March. Questions were asked and suggestions were given in preparation for the April 1 deadline. Students and faculty advisors spent the remainder of the month collaborating on research proposals. Their action research proposals will include formulating a question, completing a review of the research literature, identifying appropriate methodology and instruments to investigate research questions, and identifying subjects for the study.
Rachel Hack presenting
Rachel Hack describes her practicum for BG Parks & Rec Department
The remaining Cohort 3 practicum presentations were given at the end of March. Student presenters shared not only the details of their practicum and ideas for real-world future classroom activities, but some also engaged those in attendance. For example, a pair of presenters who conducted a tree survey for the city of Perrysburg asked students to identify leaves and demonstrated a GPS phone application similar to what they used. Students also had the opportunity to guess which types of soil would have the most worms (such as tilled versus untilled, organic versus inorganic) during a presentation on a practicum based on soil sampling. Crushed Oreos made to look like dirt and gummy worms were used as a hands-on demonstration (and were gladly eaten by those in attendance at the conclusion of the presentation).


Cohort 4 is gearing up for the Choose Ohio First Research Symposium on Friday, April 12. Poster displays and group presentations are sure to impress when considering the accomplishments of these first-year students. Families are invited to attend the Symposium in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union with poster display interactions starting at 4:15pm in Room 207 and presentations from 5:00-6:00pm in Room 206 (theater). COF scholars from BOSEF and Bioinformatics will also be displaying posters. 

Upcoming ACTION Events:

Cohort 4 Practicum Info Meeting:  April 9 (5:30-6:05pm)

Cohort 3 Capstone Info Meeting:  April 9 (6:15-6:50pm)

Choose Ohio First Research Symposium:  Friday, April 12

Cohort 1 Reunion Celebration:  April 23

Student Advisory Board Meeting:  April 25

Graduation Celebration: May 4

April 2013




Ray Szparagowski 




















Cohort 4 Practicum Mtg 5:30-6:05


Cohort 3 Capstone Mtg


(both 133 LSC)




Choose Ohio First Research Symposium 4:15-6:00  

207/206 BTSU







Scott Green 


















BGSU Preview Day















Josh Klein B-day





Jennie Jester & Nicole Winhover



Cohort 1 Reunion Celebration 5:30-6:50 

Sebo Center


Kim Verhoff 





Student Advisory Board 5:30-6:30









Cory Gallagher B-day




May 1

   May 2

May 3

May 4








Zoe Winkelman B-day






Graduation Luncheon Celebration 12:00-1:30


Volume 2, Issue 4
In This Issue
Student Profile - Lacee
Student Profile - Tyler
Cohort Updates
April Calendar
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One-on-Ones with the Director


Dr. Brahier loves many aspects of his role as the director of ACTION, but one of his favorite things to do is to interact directly with students. He looks forward to his biannual one-on-one meetings with each first-year ACTION scholar and makes this a priority each fall and spring semester. All ACTION students are invited to meet with him if they have questions, and many of the older students also take advantage of his knowledge and seek his input. 


These individual meeting times not only provide an opportunity for him to discuss scheduling for the upcoming semester but also enable him to get to know participants while offering advice and suggestions on a wide variety of topics.  


This semester we used an online sign-up tool, and it made the entire scheduling process much simpler for students. We anticipate that we will continue using signupgenius.com on many occasions in the future. 

Dr. Brahier meeting with Molly Conroy from Cohort 4

The Month in Photos


Rather than telling you more about some of the ACTION students, you can see for yourself below.  They are working hard and enjoying the relationships they've made through ACTION.


Lance Kruse, Haley Coder, and Lauren Hartsough
Erin Ziems, Kim Allaire, Megan Kemerley, and Leslie Rusell share research topics
Meel research group
Dr. Meel's freshman research project is taking shape 
Kayla Fackler, Lauren Brunswick, Nicole Sloan, and Steph Bellman are ready for the practicum presentations to begin
Marc and Megan
Megan Schlosser and Marc Garcia are all smiles after giving their practicum presentation
Felicia Beverick and Larissa Van Der Molen engaging the room of ACTION students during their practicum presentation
Kristi and Jaryt w dirt
Kristi Frank and Jaryt Salvo look through the Oreo cookie "dirt" for gummy worms
Sarah High, Megan Schlosser, Betsie Naylor, Corrinne Sullivan, and Maggie Dowe chatting at the practicum session
Dan w Kayla Fackler
Dr. Brahier shares a laugh with Kayla Fackler

Incoming ACTION Scholars

Cohort 5 continues to take shape. Many of the students selected to participate have already accepted our offer and will arrive on campus in July for the Summer Bridge as their journey in the ACTION program begins. We know our current scholars are anxious to meet and get to know the newest members of the ACTION family. 


Plans are already underway for another exciting Summer Bridge with the schedule for academic sessions and events coming together. Most of our faculty are returning to host summer sessions for Cohort 5, and we will also have a few new presenters and topics that we think students will really enjoy. Using student evaluations from previous years, we continue to look for ways to improve the Summer Bridge. As the new ACTION scholars begin their college careers, our staff and students will be supporting them every step of the way.  

As a Choose Ohio First grant program sponsored by the Ohio Board of Regents, our goal is to produce exceptional science and mathematics teachers who will impact the next generation across the state to improve in STEM areas. The need is great for good teachers in these areas.

Science and Math Education in ACTION 
Mailing Address: 450 Math Sciences Building, BGSU, Bowling Green, OH 43403 
Campus Location: 308 Math Sciences Building
Phone: 419-372-6562
Fax: 419-372-6092
[email protected]

Director: Dr. Daniel Brahier
Program Manager: Wendy Standinger
Program Secretary: Nancy Hoose