Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science’s Chuck Yarborough, history instructor, and Elizabeth Morgan, chemistry instructor, both received educator of the year in their respective areas. Morgan was named High School Chemistry Teacher of the Year by the Mississippi Section of the American Chemical Society and Yarborough is the recipient of the 2018 Jesse Palmer Memorial Award as Outstanding Social Studies Educator of the Year by the Mississippi Council for the Social Studies (MCSS).

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“I am honored to be recognized by my professional peers, who are all working to positively impact the lives of so many young people across Mississippi,” said Yarborough.  In 2017, the MCSS selected Yarborough for the Mississippi Social Studies Teachers Hall of Fame. He added, “It’s also amazing to be selected for this award that celebrates the contributions of Dr. Jesse Palmer, a long-time teacher educator at the University of Southern Mississippi.”  Yarbrough is in his 24th year at MSMS where in addition to his teaching, he is the girls’ soccer coach, and serves as an advisor to many student organizations.  “Lovingly known on campus as “Yarby,” Mr. Yarborough is a positive and influential force inside and outside the classroom for many at MSMS,” said Madison Wypyski, MSMS senior. She added, “Unfortunately, I have never had Mr. Yarborough as a teacher, however, I can faithfully say that having known him as a coach, a mentor, and a role model during my time at MSMS, it is obvious why he was named the Social Studies Educator of the Year.”

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As a 1995 graduate of MSMS, Dr. Morgan is no stranger to rigorous coursework as a student or instructor. “It is an honor to be chosen, and it’s always affirming to be recognized for the work that I do. I am grateful to my nominator and the committee for choosing me as the High School Chemistry Teacher of Year,” said Dr. Morgan. “She’s very focused on the hands-on aspect of classes so they are a lot more interesting than her just lecturing,” said Cade Burton, MSMS senior. At MSMS, Dr. Morgan also serves as the American Chemical Society ChemClub and Science Bowl advisors. MSMS Senior Morgan Emokpae said, “Dr. Morgan’s receipt of this award is truly indicative of the passion and dedication that she puts towards equipping her students for success in chemistry.”

“For both of these teachers these recognitions are a confirmation of what we knew about the level of excellence they bring to the classroom,” said Kelly Brown, MSMS Director for Academic Affairs.

The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science (MSMS) is Mississippi’s only public, residential high school specifically designed to meet the needs of the state’s most academically gifted and talented high school juniors and seniors from all corners of the Magnolia State.

Each year, MSMS graduates are offered millions of dollars in scholarships – the 104 graduates of the Class of 2018 accepted $9.6 million of the more than $34 million offered.

The school has been named by several publications as one of America’s best high schools. MSMS was recently ranked the #6 best public high school in the nation and the faculty was ranked #1 as the best public high school teachers in the nation by Niche.

Founded in 1987, on the campus of the Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, Mississippi, the mission of MSMS is “to enhance the future of Mississippi in the global society by meeting the individual needs of gifted and talented students through providing innovative learning experiences and leadership development in a residential environment.”

Additionally, MSMS is a member of the National Consortium for Secondary STEM schools (NCSSS), and at the founding was the fourth such school to exist in the nation.

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