About SEP

Science Education Partnership

About SEP

Since 1991, the Science Education Partnership has helped foster partnerships between research scientists and over 500 secondary school science teachers in Washington State. Through workshops and a science mentor program, teachers learn molecular biology techniques and participate in laboratory research.  In addition, participating in SEP allows mentor scientists to hone their teaching skills and learn about middle and high school science education.

Each spring, mentor scientists located at Fred Hutch and our partner sites select teachers from the applicant pool to participate in the Science Education Partnership. Teachers and mentor scientists collaborate to design a research experience tailored to their interests.

This arrangement often leads to lasting partnerships that extend beyond the summer session, including classroom visits by scientists during the school year. Perhaps more importantly, these partnerships have helped to dispel some of the common stereotypes that each group perceives about the other. The diversity of research projects over the past several years has included such topics as protein structure, DNA sequencing, yeast genetics, fruit fly development, and oncogenes.

After participating and completing the Summer Session, teachers have access to SEP's Kit Loan Program including complete lesson plans, as well as biotechnology equipment and supplies. Technical and scientific support is also available from program staff and scientists at the Hutch.

Our Goals

  • Professional Development
    Provide professional development for teachers that deepens their understanding of life science research, enriches their pedagogical practices, and supports their growth as teacher-leaders.
  • Science Learning Resources and Support
    Support engaging, challenging, and relevant classroom learning experiences for all students by providing access to high-quality instructional materials, resources, and cutting-edge science.
  • Partnerships and Community
    Connect educators and scientists to foster a life science community anchored in partnership and mutual learning.