The Joy of STEM Education

Graham DeVey recently retired from Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB) where he worked as a program manager for their Women in Technology (WIT) Island Energy Inquiry™ (IEI) project since 2012. IEI is a professional development program for Hawaii STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) teachers to engage in rigorous explorations of real energy issues in our islands.

“IEI uses research-based techniques to guide teachers through the inquiry-learning process,” DeVey explained. “The curriculum is based on renewable energies prevalent in Hawaii, including solar water heating, solar photovoltaics, wind energy, geothermal, ocean thermal energy conversion, biofuels, and energy conservation and efficiency audit. In the workshops, teachers practice labs and activities using the latest Hawaii standards and energy data while learning how to implement this training in the classroom.”

Working with other IEI staffers from WIT, DeVey has trained 495 teachers during 38 workshops, representing 42,000 students of Hawaii statewide. “I’ve been very fortunate that our WIT courses attracted some of the best teachers in the state, and we’ve received ongoing praise from our teachers, who acknowledge that IEI has re-awakened their love of teaching,” DeVey noted. “Online webinars present teachers with the opportunity to share lessons learned and write reflections for their professional development credits.”

Julia Davison, Pukalani Elementary School teacher said, “The IEI program offers a great opportunity for teachers and students to learn more about sustainable energy use. It provides problem-solving and collaboration for designing an energy-sustainable future for Hawaii. This powerful inquiry-based instruction will help my students be successful in science, other academic subjects, and in their daily lives.”

DeVey came to MEDB with an impressive resume. He served as a Navy commander flying the P-3C Orion patrol plane. Later, he became Director of Engineering for Carrier Corporation’s Asia Pacific Division and Vice President of their Corporate Technology Planning Division in Syracuse, New York. After receiving an inner call to help young American students consider and qualify for careers in science and engineering, DeVey earned a Master of Arts in teaching and taught physics at Baldwin High School for 17 years.

DeVey’s goal was to make science fun for STEM teachers and their students. Most of all he was a great colleague and support.

Mapu Quitazol, MEDB WIT Program Manager

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