the spring of 1992, shortly after his retirement
as a nuclear chemist, Dick Spaunburgh dropped by the newly constructed Ruth Patrick
Science Education Center to volunteer his services in our effort to promote
science. He also informed us that there were other resources in our community
that we might be able to access
through the American Nuclear Society, of which he is a member. He shared
with us his desire to see children enjoy science, particularly chemistry, as he
had throughout his career. This was the beginning of a long and rewarding relationship
between the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center and our valuable volunteer
in this monthÕs RPSEC Volunteer Spotlight, Dick Spaunburgh.
of Mr. Spaunburgh's serious interest in the young people of the CSRA, three
very successful programs immediately
developed: RPSEC Workstudy Scholarship, Outstanding Teacher in Science
and Mathematics Award, and Teaching Radiation, Energy, And Technology Workshop
(TREAT). Working with the CSRA Section of the American Nuclear Society, Dick helped
develop a scholarship program that has sponsored an undergraduate to assist
with the hands-on student programs at the Center for the past three years.
Two of the three students they supported have since been hired to teach science
to K-12 students. The third person
is pursuing a career in nursing. Instructional opportunities made possible
for these three students through DickÕs initial efforts, directly impacted the
Science CenterÕs goal of increasing the number of well-prepared science teachers
in the classroom.
Not only has Mr. Spaunburgh encouraged active involvement
of his own professional organization, but has also devoted countless
hours of his own time helping the Center provide services for teachers and students.
He is part of the planning
and implementation team that developed a week-long workshop for teachers on
Teaching Radiation, Energy, And Technology (TREAT). Offered for four years now,
TREAT provides teachers with balanced and up-to-date information, materials,
and hands-on activities to teach those topics.
In November of 1994, the
RPSEC and the CSRA chapter of the American Chemical Society unveiled the "Living
Periodic Table." The structure in the main lobby of the RPSEC is 25 feet wide,
8 feet high, and 2 feet deep.
Each element is represented by a drawer into which samples of the element and
literature describing the element can be stored. Mr. Spaunburgh was the chairman
of the committee responsible for the production of the table. Without Dick's
energy and leadership there would never have been a Living Periodic Table.
Dick is still working on the table by gathering representative samples of the
elements to put into the drawers.
In addition to the above activities, Mr.
Spaunburgh has assisted in nontechnical
capacities as well. For the past three years, the RPSEC has sponsored
two computer technology projects where the teachers brought their students
to the Macintosh Classroom at the RPSEC. Dick acted as a van driver who transported
the school children during these projects.
Thank you, Dick, for all
of your help!
Back to December 1995 Table of Contents
Comments to Rpsec@aiken.sc.edu
URL: http://rpsec.usca.sc.edu/Newsletter/Dec95/spaunburg.html (August 1997)