LSU alumnae, Legoria and Messina, recognized with Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching


President Barack Obama honored Mary Legoria and Linda Messina as recipients of the prestigious Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). They will be recognized at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., on September 8. Legoria and Messina are two of only 213 mathematics and science teachers from across the country to receive this prestigious award.

Dr. Mary Legoria received her BS in agriculture (‘81), BS in elementary education (’89), MA in elementary education (’95), EdS (’97), and PhD in science education (2012), all from LSU. She is an elementary science lab teacher at Westdale Heights Academic Magnet (WHAM) in Baton Rouge. She has taught in the East Baton Rouge School system for more than 22 years and has been a science specialist for more than ten years.

Legoria maintains a close relationship with the LSU Coastal Roots Seedling Nursery Program, which educates students and teachers on coastal issues and sustainability, and engages students in restoration projects. Through this program, WHAM students develop an attitude of stewardship toward Louisiana’s natural resources. In the last eight years, students have planted more than 2,700 native tree seedlings at three restoration sites.

Linda Messina received her BS in medical technology from LSU. She has taught at St. Joseph’s Academy for 22 years. She has taught chemistry, biology, honors biology, advanced placement biology, and environmental science, and is the school’s Science Fair Coordinator. She is also co-moderator of the school’s Science Club, which participates in the LSU Coastal Roots program.

The PAEMST is awarded to outstanding K-12 science and mathematics teachers from across the country. The winners are selected by a panel of distinguished scientists, mathematicians and educators following an initial selection process at the state level.

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The LSU School of Education (SOE) offers graduate and undergraduate programs in Curriculum and Instruction and in Educational Leadership, Research, and Counseling. The School’s mission is to prepare P-12 educational professionals to be leaders, practitioners and scholars knowledgeable in contemporary educational issues.

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About CHSE

The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The College is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Leadership and Human Resource Development, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Library and Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs and 18 graduate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 977 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is continually working to improve its programs.

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