See the Annual Calendar in Section II Program Components and Annual Timelines above for the timing of the annual recruitment cycles. Science Fellows and Classroom Teachers are recruited separately for the school year classroom teaching and summer curriculum development components of the project.
Science Fellows are hired three times during the year; for the fall, spring, and summer semesters. The number of Science Fellows hired varies from semester to semester and year to year depending on the number of Classroom Teachers participating in the program and if the scheduling works out. During the fall and spring both Williams and MCLA hire around twenty Science Fellows each. Williams and MCLA hire three Science Fellows each for the work that takes place during the summer.
Each institution has slightly different processes and protocols when it comes to hiring Science Fellows and the expectations for the Science Fellows.
MCLA and Williams advertise and recruit for the Science Fellow position in various ways, including word of mouth, posting on student job sites, faculty members sharing information with students, in-class presentations, posting on project websites, tabeling at activities/club fairs and admissions events, and through informational emails.
Williams and MCLA interview all applications for the Science Fellow position. The questions and duration of the interview vary from applicant to applicant. The main purpose of the interview is to describe the responsibilities and expectations to the applicant, answer any questions the applicant has, and to observe their interpersonal skills. It is important to note that not all applicants are hired for the Science Fellow positions.
Science Fellow Job Posting
As a public school district we are required to post all positions. The job descriptions for our summer curriculum development and school year science teacher participant positions are below. In addition to formal postings, we also e-mail all eligible teachers to alert them of the opportunity, and sometimes speak to individual teachers to explain the opportunity and answer questions.
During the school year, we have been able to accept all teachers who have applied to participate in the program. In year one we had 15 teachers participating. In year two we have 17 teachers participating. The teachers who did not return to participate in our second year, or who expressed interest but ultimately did not participate cited the difficulty of scheduling a two-hour block of time on a weekly basis to host the Science Fellows, being moved to a new grade level where they were less comfortable with the curriculum overall, or having a “difficult class” as their reasons for not participating.
For the summer work we have had more applicants than positions available. Our interview questions are in the file below. During our first summer we hired six teachers to participate in the curriculum development work. We found that effectively managing six teachers and six fellows to meet our expectations for the quality and quantity of work produced was challenging. Entering our second summer our plan is to involve only three teachers, but for more time and with more structured, consistent meetings with the Science Fellows.