A teacher from Bay County wins Michigan Lottery's Excellence in Education award

Congratulations to the Garber High School teacher!

A teacher from Bay County wins Michigan Lottery's Excellence in Education award
Ethan Shannon, winner of the Michigan Lottery Excellence in Education award. Photograph credit to the Michigan Lottery.

The Michigan Lottery takes pride in teachers throughout the state and likes to recognize their contribution to education. This week, Ethan Shannon, a STEM robotics teacher at Garber High School in Essexville, was given the Michigan Lottery's Excellence in Education award.

As part of his award, Ethan received a $2,000 cash prize. He was also entered into the selection for the Michigan Lottery's Educator of the Year award. At the end of the year, one educator will be chosen and will receive a $10,000 cash prize. Ethan was also featured in a news segment on the Lottery's media partner stations, which aired earlier this week.

In an interview with the Michigan Lottery, Ethan explained that he became a teacher so that he could have an impact on young people's lives, and his career has met this wish more than he could have ever hoped for. His favorite part of teaching is encouraging his students to get involved in a hands-on project.

Getting my students involved in something hands-on for the first time is an amazing experience. Seeing the enjoyment on their faces while they are fully engaged and learning something new is incredibly rewarding.

Ethan earned his bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University and his master's degree from Saginaw Valley State University. He has been a teacher for 25 years, all in his current position at Garber High School.

Ethan was nominated for the Excellence award by a former student who commended him for his commitment to education and helping to prepare students for careers in engineering and medicine.

The student said:

About 10 years ago, Mr. Shannon initiated Essexville's award-winning robotics program to increase access to STEM extracurricular activities for K-12 students in our community. He has exponentially grown the organization to include multiple elementary, middle, and high school teams, as well as a coding club. Mr. Shannon volunteers thousands of hours as a robotics mentor and writes hundreds of grants while also using money from his own retirement account to support the program. In fact, he personally bought nearly every tool in the robotics lab, spending over $50,000 to give his students the equipment they need to be successful.

The Michigan Lottery Excellence in Education award

Established in 2014, the Excellence in Education awards recognize outstanding Michigan public educators. Each week of the school year, an educator is chosen by the Michigan Lottery to receive the award. The recipient is given a $2,000 cash prize. They will also receive a plaque and have their own news segment featured on WXYZ-TV in Detroit, FOX 17 in Grand Rapids, FOX 47 in Lansing, WNEM-TV, Saginaw, and WWTV-TV in Traverse City. At the end of the school year, the Michigan Lottery will nominate one of the weekly winners to receive the Lottery's Educator of the Year award and a $10,000 cash prize.

All public school educators are eligible. That includes coaches, administrators, and support staff, as well as teachers. To nominate an educator, complete the form here.