Five Triangle Area Teachers Named Biogen Foundation Kenan Fellows

RALEIGH, N.C. – Five Triangle area educators have been named 2022-23 Kenan Fellows. Their fellowships were made possible through a collaboration between the Biogen Foundation and the Kenan Fellows Program for Teacher Leadership at N.C. State University.

The teachers are part of the 2022-23 Kenan Fellows cohort, and their fellowship projects will be to implement a new initiative called, the Young Scientist Research Challenge, where small teams of middle and high school students will conduct research addressing issues in science and compete through a group presentation. The Biogen Foundation Kenan Fellows will lead the initiative which will involve team recruitment, challenge design, promotion, and event management. The chosen educators will intern over the summer and connect with leaders and scientists from Biogen and IQVIA.

“The Biogen Foundation is proud to support the newest group of Kenan Fellows, an important program that plays an integral role in providing innovative instruction for teachers to help them further inspire tomorrow’s scientists to be inquisitive and critical thinkers,” said Melissa Seymour, Biogen Chief Quality Officer, and member of the Biogen Foundation’s board of directors.

The fellowships were made possible through a grant from the Biogen Foundation. The educators are listed below.

  • Leslie Aguirre, Holly Springs High School, Wake County Public School System
  • Shannon Hardy, The Exploris School, charter school in Raleigh
  • Dorothy Holley, West Johnston High School, Johnston County Schools
  • Cherilyn Murray, North Wake College & Career Academy, Wake County Public School System
  • Jill Ray, Vernon Malone College & Career Academy, Wake County Public School System

Kenan fellowships are awarded through a competitive application process. As part of the fellowship, the educators will attend a series of professional learning institutes focused on project-based learning, digital learning, and leadership development. Teachers remain in the classroom while completing the yearlong fellowship. Educators who complete the program say they feel a deeper connection to their community and grow professionally as part of a statewide network of teacher leaders. As their leadership skills grow, Kenan Fellows lead pro-actively within their schools and districts. Many become empowered to influence and lead educational innovation at state and national levels.

“Thanks to the support of industry leaders such as Biogen, we are able to provide educators with insights into the skills students need to succeed in college and careers, and strengthen ties between education and industry,” said Dr. Elaine Franklin, director of the Kenan Fellows Program for Teacher Leadership.