2016 California State Science Fair
Science Fair Teacher of the Year — Senior Division

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The award citation at the Awards Ceremony reads:

This year’s Senior Division Science Fair Teacher of the Year award recipient has been sending students to the state science fair since 2008 and this year marks their 107th fair competitor. At the regional level, students of this year’s winner dominated, winning an astounding 73% of available regional awards.

This year’s winner has set up a system at their school that they call a “chain of outreach.” Upper grade high school students who are veterans at science fair mentor and support new and younger science fair participants. Additionally, all high school science fair participants in the school’s science club do outreach at the middle school level, serving as judges and guest speakers for younger grades. This student-led approach to science fair has empowered this teacher’s students to feel complete ownership of their scientific research, pushing them to make discoveries on their own and solve their own problems.

This year’s teacher of the year is dedicated to their students’ success. Spending Saturdays, lunch periods, and after school time to provide lab equipment, arrange for guest speakers from universities and industry professionals, this teacher feels blessed to do what they like and has fun every day preparing students for futures in STEM and undergraduate research.

This winner’s Principal describes this teacher as a model teacher blending direct instruction with student engagement and participation.

Please join me in congratulating our Senior Division Science Fair Teacher of the Year — from Thousand Oaks High School in Thousand Oaks, Ventura County — Dr. Nikki Malhotra.

Nikki Malhotra was named as advisor on the following projects this year: S0301, S0318, S0420, S0508, S0601, S0621, S0622, S1413, S1515, S1706, S1805, S2103, S2111, S2208, and S2211.

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California State Science Fair / 2016 / Science Fair Teacher of the Year — Senior Division / CalifSF@usc.edu