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State Sen. Rachel Zenzinger awarded fellowship to boost STEM education programs

Author: Ernest Luning - October 25, 2017 - Updated: October 27, 2017

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State Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, D-ArvadaState Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, D-Arvada

A multistate organization that advocates for STEM education programs in public schools has chosen state Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, D-Arvada, as a policy fellow for 2018.

Zenzinger, a substitute teacher when she isn’t legislating, is one of six officials selected from among the 21 states that participate in the STEMx network, which aims to “transform education” by supporting study in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

The fellows are supposed to work on methods to make STEM education more effective and will attend at least two conferences, a spokesman for Zenzinger said.

Zenzinger was nominated for the STEMx fellowship by Colorado Succeeds, the Colorado organization involved with STEMx.

“She has especially coordinated with our efforts to increase opportunities for all students to engage with real-world problem solving and the critical skills STEM learning can bring to classrooms,” Colorado Succeeds President Scott Laband said in a statement.

Zen zinger, who sits on the Senate Education Committee, was among the prime sponsors of a bipartisan bill last session to create a special STEM endorsement on high school diplomas for students who complete certain courses, meant to let employers and higher education know they’re proficient.

“I’m thrilled to accept the STEMx Policy Fellowship, and I look forward to working with these great people and with colleagues across the country who are committed to finding ways to promote this important aspect of education,” Zenzinger said in a statement.

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning is a political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has covered politics and government for newspapers and online news sites in Colorado for more than 25 years, including at the Highlands Ranch Herald, the Jefferson Sentinels chain of community newspapers and the Aurora Sentinel, where he was the city hall and cops reporter. After editing the Aurora Daily Sun, he was a political reporter and blogger for The Colorado Independent site. For nearly a decade, he was a senior political reporter and occasional editor at The Colorado Statesman before the 119-year-old publication merged with Colorado Politics in 2017.