DR. LAIRD H. KRAMER
College of Arts & Sciences
Professor, Florida International University
Currently a professor for Florida International University’s Department of Physics, Dr. Kramer is also the Director of the STEM Transformation Institute at FIU. He has been a transformative figure in influencing how STEM programs are taught university-wide. His approach centers on active student engagement, starting with the unique modeling instruction platform he implemented in the department of physics more than 10 years ago. This shift in classroom instruction has helped grow the number of Physics majors from about 30 in 2000 to nearly 200 in 2014.
In 2010, he led an effort to recruit and educate a new generation of physical sciences teachers and simultaneously acquired a $1 million grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute for FIU. Dr. Kramer is the founder of the Physics Education Research Group, a university engagement initiative that pursues new methods in teaching. He was named the driving force behind FIU joining the National Science and Mathematics Teacher Imperative, which is operated by the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities. Most recently, Dr. Kramer submitted an application for a coveted UTeach grant, a national program designed to create jobs for secondary education teachers throughout the United States in STEM disciplines. This spring, FIU was awarded the $1.25 million UTeach grant and the program is slated to launch next fall.