Watson Chronicle


Student Opportunities and Student News

Isaac Bear Senior Receives NHC BOE Future Teacher Scholarship

Monday, April 01, 2019

Madchen Lastinger, a senior at Early Bear Early College High School, has received a $28,000 New Hanover County Board of Education Student Scholarship for future teachers. She plans to pursue a degree in special education at UNCW’s Watson College of Education. The award was presented at a signing ceremony and reception on April 2.

Madchen began volunteering in a special education classroom at Holly Shelter Middle School when she was in the seventh grade. She has also worked with Adopt an Angel and volunteered in exceptional children’s classrooms at Hoggard High School and at Wrightsboro Elementary while attending Isaac Bear.

As a senior, Madchen participated in the first cohort of the Future Teachers Career Academy, a small learning community at IBECHS for students interested in pursuing a teaching career. The innovative program, coordinated by WCE Ed Lab director Brian Brinkley in partnership with Isaac Bear and New Hanover County Schools, provides students with opportunities to volunteer, teach and experience education from many points of view while still in high school.

“When the FTCA started last fall, it was just a handful of students, but now there are 10,” she said. “Dr. Brinkley is such a supportive person. He talks with us about styles of teaching, advises us on classes we should be taking, and encourages us to form bonds with our teachers and each other.”

Madchen toured NC State, UNC-Pembroke, East Carolina University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with Isaac Bear, but knew she wanted to remain at UNCW as soon as she started taking college courses during her junior year.

“UNCW is awesome,” she said. “The class sizes are right, and I feel welcome here.”

In addition to attending school and volunteering in the community, Madchen currently works several days a week as a server and host at the Sawmill Cafe in Wrightsboro. She said she is honored to receive New Hanover County’s future teacher scholarship.

“The scholarship means a great deal to my family and me,” she said. “I am learning to balance school and work, but the scholarship will take financial pressure off and let me take advantage of more opportunities at UNCW as I work toward my degree in special education.”

New Hanover County Schools announced the 2019 future teacher scholarships in a press release on March 14: Four Students Selected to Receive New Hanover County Board of Education Scholarships for Future Teachers.

Additional scholarship recipients are: Eleni Blackley, Hoggard High School (East Carolina University) Reagan Radford, New Hanover High School (Appalachian State University); and Matthew Weaver, Laney High School (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill).