NOYCE Master Teacher Fellowship

Limestone University’s Master of Education in Teacher Leadership program was recently awarded a $1.4 million National Science Foundation grant for Teacher Leadership in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).

It represents the largest academic grant that Limestone has received to date, the result of a year-long grant-writing process.

The grant writing team, made up of many current members of Limestone’s faculty, included Dr. Brian Ameling, Principal Investigator; Dr. Virginia Scates, Co-Principal Investigator; Dr. Shelly Meyers, Senior Personnel and Dean College of Education and Health Sciences; and Dr. Jess Harris, Teacher Education M.Ed. faculty member. The consulting firm Merchant McIntire provided grant writing support for the project.

The funding opportunity is awarded through the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, which provides funding to institutions of higher education to provide scholarships, stipends, and programmatic support to recruit and prepare STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) majors and professionals to become K-12 teachers. The program seeks to increase the number of K-12 teachers with strong STEM content knowledge who teach in high-need school districts.

Scates, who serves as the University’s Director of the Master of Education in Teacher Leadership Program, said that the benefits provided by Limestone’s program and the grant will give teachers support in best practices in STEM education, and she is confident that will lead to increased student learning outcomes as a result.

“This grant will do so much for the teachers taking part in the M.Ed. program and, in turn, for the students seated in their classrooms,” Scates explained. “Those students will be meeting their learning objectives and getting a rich experience through the experiences their teachers are having. That is what is most exciting about this grant.”

An initial cohort of 10 teachers from Spartanburg School District 3 and the Cherokee County School District will be selected to participate in the program under the Noyce grant. This will be the first of two cohorts that will matriculate through the program during the six-year grant implementation. These teachers will benefit from having the year-long program expenses paid for as they continue to complete or renew National Board Certification, training, and endorsements. They will also receive a salary supplement of $10,000 during years two through five, as they continue to be a part of the program and work with Limestone faculty on improving and honing their skills.

In addition to Spartanburg School District 3 and the Cherokee County School District, Limestone’s Master of Education Teacher Leadership program will also partner with the Branch Alliance for Educator Diversity (BranchEd) and the Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA).

The Master of Education in Teacher Leadership program at Limestone University is designed for practicing educators (whether in the classroom or community-based) who desire to hone their leadership skills. Master Teacher Fellows will refine their pedagogy while continuing to serve students in the classroom or work with practicing teachers in a non-administrative capacity. Courses in the program will be taught by Teacher Leader faculty, with STEM faculty also embedded in the Learning Management System course for content-specific consultation.

Teacher With Mature Female Adult Student Using Mobile Phone At Table Working In College Library
Master of Education (M.Ed.)
The program will provide teachers the opportunity to expand their leadership opportunities and add to their existing credentials. The mission of the Limestone Teacher Leadership M.Ed. is to improve the lives of those we serve by positively impacting the learning outcomes of P-12 students, providing high-quality professional development for educators, and contributing to our profession in our local community, state, region, country, and abroad. The M.Ed. program supports this mission by offering a curriculum that encourages action research and experiential learning.

Teacher With Mature Female Adult Student Using Mobile Phone At Table Working In College Library

Candidates for admission in the Limestone M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership are evaluated and accepted based on a thorough review by the admissions committee.

Contact Us

Dr. Virginia Scates

Director and Teacher Leader Principle Investigator


Related Faculty

  • Virginia Scates, Director and Teacher Leader Principle Investigator
  • Jay Ratliff, STEM Co Principle Investigator 
  • Lienne Medford, Program External Evaluator
  • Chad Hudson, Teacher Leader Senior Personnel
  • Julie Lux, Adjunct Teacher Leader Faculty 
  • Shirley Sealy, Adjunct Teacher Leader Faculty 
  • Yan Gong, STEM Faculty


Non-Profit Partnerships


Branch Alliance
Branch Alliance

BranchED will provide professional development and support to the Limestone University Noyce project’s Teacher Leader and STEM faculty in the implementation of BranchED’s Framework for the Quality Preparation of Educators within the M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership program. This Framework encompasses six principles: Community of Learners, Data Empowerment, Inclusive Pedagogy, Equitable Experiences, Intersectional Content, and Practice-Based Approach. This Framework connects research findings, promising institutional practices, and context-rich approaches that, to date, have not been systematically integrated into the standards and expectations that drive teacher education programs.

In addition, BranchED will provide professional development and support to MTFs in implementing the framework within their own curriculum, identifying and designing high-quality instructional materials, and serving as a mentor and advocate within their school settings.

BranchED is the only non-profit organization in the country dedicated to strengthening, growing, and amplifying the impact of educator preparation at Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), with the longer-range goals of both diversifying the teaching profession and intentionally addressing critical issues of educational equity for all students.

Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement
Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement

CERRA will provide South Carolina Mentor training and National Board Certification support workshops to MTFs. It is the oldest and most established teacher recruitment program in the country. CERRA's agenda is a comprehensive one in which the Center pursues a variety of programs for increasing the number of students in the education pipeline and recruiting and retaining qualified, caring, and competent teachers. The Center's primary target groups are middle and high school students, college students, and adults interested in changing careers. CERRA also targets groups of accomplished teachers through programs including mentoring, teacher leadership and National Board Certification.