Young named Friend of Science

Emmalee Scheibe, Staff Writer

Wayne State College Professor Todd Young will be receiving the Friend of Science Award on April 21. This is the top award from the Nebraska Academy of Sciences (NAS).

“I was initially a little shocked,” Young said.

He is the third recipient from WSC to receive this award. Mary Ettel received it in 2007 and Ed Brogie in 2006.

The NAS awards someone who has made significant contributions to science or science education in Nebraska. Young brought the Nebraska Science Bowls to WSC in 2010 from Lincoln. He is also the director of the Fred G. Dale Planetarium in the Carhart Science Building.

“I think the Science Bowl was a way to meet a lot of teachers from around the region and talk to them and get to know them,” Young said. “I think they appreciated that the contest would be able to continue.”

Young talks about astronomy on a monthly radio program called “AstroTalk” that airs on KYNT in Yankton, S.D.

“I’ve given a lot of talks in the region about science content and my opinions on science education and how to teach students,” Young said.

“There’s always that magic moment when you’re explaining something and someone is having a hard time understanding it so you rephrase it and you see a twinkle in their eye, and you see that they get it,” Young said. “It’s an energizing effect.”

Young also received the George Rebensdorf Teaching Excellence Award from the Nebraska State College System in 2008 and is the Rural Health Opportunities Program (RHOP) coordinator.

“I don’t think anyone achieves success unless they have a good support system.”