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NDGA receives $62,298 grant from NGEF to promote K-12 geographic education

The North Dakota Geographic Alliance recently received a $62,298 grant from the National Geographic Education Foundation, one of 51 grants NGEF awarded to the Network of Alliances for Geographic Education. These grants, totaling $2,414,466, help support 46 state-based alliances, as well as those in the District of Columbia, Chicago and Canada. Alliances strengthen geography education through a variety of programs and initiatives.

"The grant will be used to host teacher workshops, provide leadership training and geography resources for North Dakota educators as well as materials that promote geography literacy. Geography is more than maps. It is learning to make good decisions based on where we live and why that location grows or changes. Human geography is about people and places. There is cultural, economic and political geography," said Marilyn Weiser, NDGA director. "Students today are interconnected with the world. Geography helps them to understand and make sense of their place in it."

NDGA, which is housed at Minot State University, sponsors four summer professional development programs. It recently launched a new website, www.ndgeographic.org, which provides resources for educators and promotes public awareness of the importance of geographic literacy and skills. NDGA works in partnership with many state universities and colleges and government entities.

The Network of Alliances is a grassroots organization dedicated to supporting geographic education. Each alliance is a partnership between university faculty and K-12 educators that connects educators, provides world-class professional development, creates and disseminates educational resources, boosts public awareness of the importance of geography and advocates for public policies that will lead to improvements in geography education. For more than 20 years, NGEF and the alliances have worked collaboratively to catalyze geography education reform across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. To learn more about the network of Alliances, go to http://alliances.nationalgeographic.com.

"NDGA is part of a national network of geographic alliances trying to achieve geographic literacy and teach North Dakota students the importance of understanding their space and place in the world. This is of paramount importance to productive citizenship," Weiser said. "Amid national standards, common core state standards and all the improvement in our country's education system, we persistently try to better understand the geography of where we are, how best to interact with the environment and make the state an even greater place to live and work."

Since 1988, NGEF has awarded more than $85 million in grants to promote and advance geographic education. In addition to funding from NGEF, the majority of alliances receive financial support from other sources, including state and private support. More than 30 alliances have permanent endowments for geography education within NDEF.

For more information on NDGA, visit its Facebook page.

For questions, contact Weiser at marilyn.weiser@minotstateu.edu.

Published: 12/27/13



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